Divine Appointments and the Cornerstone

This article follows up on last month’s, partly because my wife and I recently experienced what we believe were divine appointments among those in the Muslim world observing the fasting month of Ramadan. We believe that, in some way or another, the Holy Spirit is at work in the hearts of seekers before we even encounter them. Our experience, we are sure, was only the tiniest fraction of Jesus’ appearances over those thirty days and was surely due to the prayers of people like you.

While using public transport in South Asia we encountered two individuals who shared with us that they were disillusioned with what they had been taught about their religion. Both were searching for the truth, and one was particularly interested in the story of Jesus’ death and resurrection. Yet a third encounter came with a former religious leader who became disillusioned by the religious teachings he was himself teaching: he had been given a few powerful dreams and, over several months, decided to follow Jesus. He is now sharing his story with insights we had not previously heard from those coming to faith from that religion. Key people, taking risks for God’s glory, were mentoring him during his questioning of and search for truth.

Why should we be surprised that God would orchestrate these appointments and use us? The Apostle Paul explains in Ephesians 2:19-22, saying that we are part of the household of God, built upon a strong foundation with Jesus holding the household together as the cornerstone. We are built as a dwelling place for God in the Spirit.

So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built into it for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Ephesians 2:19-22 ESV

What is a cornerstone? We’ve probably heard a definition or two. According to Wikipedia,

A cornerstone (or foundation stone or setting stone) is the first stone set in the construction of a masonry foundation. All other stones will be set in reference to this stone, thus determining the position of the entire structure…Over time a cornerstone became a ceremonial masonry stone, or replica, set in a prominent location on the outside of a building.

After a cursory scroll through the internet, I found that most definitions define a cornerstone as a stone fitted in a ceremony. Cornerstones do not serve the same purpose they used to. However, the first Wikipedia definition did align with the early historical definition. A cornerstone had been used as the stone to which all other stones would be set. The cornerstone would ensure that the building was plum and level.

The change in definitions, from something critical to a building’s structure to something ornamental, is primarily due to the changing context and tools available to masons today. It is also, sadly, illustrative of the context of much of Christendom in our present day, where instead of Jesus being the measuring tool by which our lives are anchored and aligned, he is easily placed as more of an ornament for display: in other words, Christianity without the love of Jesus or the power of the Holy Spirit behind it.

Are we aligned with Jesus? As believers, we find our hope and strength where others desperately searching for it will find it: in Jesus, our Cornerstone. He resides in us and orchestrates divine appointments when we might least expect them. Let’s be ready in the power of the Holy Spirit. God has divine appointments for us right around the corner.

At WMPL, we align ourselves organizationally primarily around three of Jesus’ commands:

  1. to pray to the Lord of the harvest (Luke 10:2);
  2. to go (Matthew 28:19); and
  3. to make disciples (Matthew 28:19).

Thank you for aligning yourselves with Jesus and joining us on this incredible mission!

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.