I had a doctor appointment yesterday. I was running behind since I was enjoying some super tacos at my favorite taco joint that was just down the street. My appointment was for 12:00 and I made it with 5 minutes to spare. Unfortunately I had to visit the sand box upon arrival so in order to let the doctor know that I was there I put my cap (I was in uniform as usual) on the couch in a prominent spot and went down the hall. This doctors office is rather small and the receptionist is only part time so there was no one to tell that I had arrived except the doctor and the one other patient in the waiting room.
When I returned, the other patient had disappeared, presumably into one of the other doctors offices. The door to my doctor's office was closed, so I settled down to a browse the stack of magazines, content that I had made it on time or at least had caused no problem in the schedule.
Time ticked by. It was now 20 minutes past my appointment time. I began to doubt that I was there on the right day and/or the right time. I called my wife, keeper of the schedule of schedules, and asked her to check the e-mail to confirm the day and time. Yes, she informed me, the reminder was for February 18th at 12:00.
So far so good.
More time passed.
I took a nap. Which is standard operating procedure anytime I stay still for more than a few minutes. 10 minutes later I looked at the clock. 12:45.
I suppose I could have gotten upset but I did not. I was in no hurry to return to work and my full of tacos tummy was sending out signals of contentment and patience that Job would have been proud of.
At 2:00 the door opened and out came my doctor with a patient leading the way. The doctor greeted me pleasantly and I returned the greeting. My doubts and confusion at the situation continued.
My appointment was today, right? I asked.
Yes, she replied.
At noon, right, I queried.
No, I don't think so, she said. Let me check. She looked at her desk calendar and began to apologize. My appointment was indeed for 12:00. She had thought it was 1:00. The patient before me had come in a state of crisis and the doctor "gave up her lunch," to assist thinking my appointment was an hour later.
And I marveled at God's timing. The extra time spent at lunch in good company and good food. The last minute arrival for the appointment the dash to the facilities. If not for these, the doctor would have been reminded that my appointment was at noon and even if I had encouraged her to switch appointments, would never have been able to give her full attention knowing I was outside waiting.
I had no crisis. This was the last appointment in a series of follow ups. A mere formality.
I was in no rush. It was God's perfect timing. A God thing.
In this time of Lenten sacrifice, may we all have the patience to let God use us for his purposes and occasionally glimpse the results