Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man.” I was cupbearer to the king.
You’ve heard it said, “Timing is everything.” However, the Christian version of that statement should be, “Timing is everything when it’s — God’s timing.”
Think for a moment about the people who have crossed the path of your life and have altered your direction.
To help jog your memory, I’m going to recall a series of events that shaped my life. Note how I had nothing to do with the encounters. These weren’t people I had previously known. They appeared in my life when I needed them; right place at the right time.
I mentioned Steve Stickler in a previous devotional. He was the new Strasburg High School band director who suggested I had musical talent. His encouragement inspired a dream within me to pursue a career in music. Right place — right time.
In the eleventh grade, Mr. Stickler moved on and was replaced by Mr. Duffy, who formerly played trumpet in the Navy Band. Thanks to his influence, my dream was given a direction. Later that year I auditioned for the Navy Band and was accepted. Once again, right place — right time.
In the early morning hours on New Year’s Day 1969, I returned from a gig to the Navy Band barracks in Honolulu. Didn’t have transportation, so I had to call a cab. The cabby’s radio was cranked up and a commercial played for Career Academy. I’ll never forget the first words of the ad. “You too can be a radio announcer.” Next morning, I called their number and enrolled in the Career Academy home study course. That simple event changed my dream and set me on course for a forty-year radio career. I was in the right place at the right time.
On a beautiful day in the fall of 1970, I had just returned home after my discharge from the Navy. I stopped by St. Paul’s Lutheran Church where I had taken a part-time job as the choir director. When I opened the door, a girl was standing on the stairs smiling brighter than the September sunshine. Once again, the Lord had put me in the right place at the right time. A few months ago we celebrated our 46th wedding anniversary.
In 1973, I was sitting in my office in the City Federal Building in Birmingham, Alabama. WSGN had taken a hit in the ratings and as Program Director, I feared for my job. Then the phone rang. The caller asked to speak to my predecessor. When I told him the person he wanted no longer worked for us, he told me he was looking for a PD for a radio station in Jackson, Mississippi. Then he asked, “How about you? Would you be interested in moving to Jackson?” Right place — right time.
One more. About a year later, I was visited by a local comic and TV newsman who was promoting his new comedy record. That encounter led to the morning radio team of Burt and Kurt. We remained as radio partners for 33 years. Once again, God put me in the right place at the right time.
Back to our focus text. Nehemiah was cupbearer to the Persian King, Artaxerxes I. The Lord placed Nehemiah in a position of trust before one of the most powerful men in the world. The burden of Nehemiah’s heart was for his people to return to their homeland and rebuild it. Through that divinely initiated encounter, Nehemiah’s request was granted. (Nehemiah 2:3-8) God put him in the right place at the right time.
Nehemiah prayed for success and favor for him and his people. He had a dream, and the Lord put him in the right place at the right time for it to become a reality.
All along the path of your life, the Lord marks your way. People and events point to the direction you should follow. Sometimes you come to a crossroads that requires a change in direction. That’s why your walk must be bathed in prayer and godly conduct.
As you navigate the complexities of this life on earth, may the Lord grant you success and favor, direct your path, and put you in the right place at the right time.
For more on this topic, check out this article: Keep Your Eyes On the Prize
Reprinted from The Forever Notebook, Book 4 (October – December) Get your copy here: Paperback and eBook/Kindle formats.