Staying for one more drink




Proverbs 16:9 (ISV) A person plans his way,  but the Lord directs his steps.


The other day I received a phone call that reminded me how much the Lord protects us and keep us safe. After I hung up I was amazed to see the unseen protection I had in my life. Our pastor says that Gods is strategically moving in our lives 1000 time a day and if we pay attention we might see and understand one or two of those moves. How right he is, God’s unseen hand puts us on the path to meet strategic individuals, being at the “right place” or the “right time” to change the direction we were going. Some of these strategic moves are subtle and with hindsight we see the movements and understand, thankful for His intervening hand. Some movements we don’t see and never will, but some are breathtakingly, life saving, hallelujah moments where we know exactly that God has done something so amazing that everyone around can’t ignore His presence in our lives. That’s the story I want to tell you today.


I first heard this story from my Aunt Edie when I was a teen anger. She started it with, “Did you ever hear the story of how staying for a drink saved your dad’s life?” Talk about grabbing a girl’s attention! No, no I had never heard this story and looked to my dad to see what he had to say. He smiled shrugged his shoulders and joined us on the sofa to share this amazing fingerprint moment.


When my dad was stationed in Vietnam he was at Cam Ranh bay.  He and a buddy had stopped by one of the local watering holes to have a drink and get something to eat. They were inside and the snack bar was about 100 feet or so away from where they were sitting. Dad said they had stood up to pay for their drinks when the waitress came to their table with two more. The two guys looked at each other and sat down to have one more drink. (I mean hey they were already poured and it would have been wasting a perfectly good drink.) As the men sat down and took a sip of their drinks a 122mm rocket hit the snack bar. The impact threw my dad and his friend to the ground, the ringing in their ears must have been crippling. In the midst of the chaos that occurred, the men helped the injured and pulled people from the rubble. The jeep, they would have been in at this time, had the windows blown out and shrapnel was embedded into both the driver and passenger’s seats.


Sadly 5 were killed and 14 were injured, but my father and his friend were saved-  by staying for that drink. Talk about a moment where God has touched his life, a moment that let me and my brother be raised by this Godly man.

Close calls happen to us every day, some we’re aware of, others we will never find out about but we know that the hand of our Lord is on us, and protects us.


Lord thank you for strategically moving in our lives and directing our path. Even though we may never see each detail You have done. Thank you for showing us a few and reminding us You have Your hand on our lives.