“I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happens to them all.” Ecc 9:11
In the spring of 2005, as I was spending time with the Lord, I felt like He impressed upon to me to go to Panama. It seemed a little strange to me as that thought had never occurred to me before and we knew of no one or no church in Panama to even connect with. I asked Him what the purpose of the trip was and wrote down the answer. It had to do with the financial realm. I asked Him when and He said to “make haste”. I shared all this with my wife and asked her input. The Holy Spirit seemed to move on her and she was in tears, sensing His leading as well.
We were both perplexed, but immediately after that I booked our tickets. Before leaving for Panama, I happened to be meeting with a client, who upon discovering we were heading for Panama, offered to underwrite the trip if we would look for some beach front property for him to develop. I’ve heard that God pays for what He orders, but this was beyond my expectation. Talk about good “eth” (timing)!
While in Panama, we headed to the mountain town of Boquette for some rest. It was at our destination that I overheard a conversation between two women at the next table. I just happened to be at the right place at the right time and heard them discussing their experience that day inside the rainforest. They were speaking in reverential tones with such awe that I knew for the first time, I had to discover the rainforest myself. Something was awakened within when I just happened to overhear their conversation at the next table. I was experiencing the “eth” of God and didn’t know it.
Overhearing that one conversation sensitized me to my environment and it was the next morning that the Lord spoke clearly to me saying, “Son, everything you need to learn about business, you can learn in the rainforest.” What I now realize, in retrospect, is that I would have missed over hearing that conversation had I delayed in going to Panama. God had an “eth” for me and the reward for that is still unfolding.
I am in Panama this week and next filming 21 high growth factors that make the rainforest so incredibly productive as a result of that exchange over four years ago. I suspect that you, like me, have had many, many “eth’s” in your life and I suspect we have let them float by because we dismissed them as just our own thoughts. On occasion, we have recognized that we were in a special moment and hopefully took advantage of that, but I believe that we have missed far too many and I for one want to change that. In my next blog, I will carry this thought a little further.