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Divine Appointments at McDonald’s

By June 5, 2023June 7th, 2023No Comments

In the book Sent: Living a Life That Invites Others to Jesus by Heather Holleman and Ashley Holleman, we read of practical examples of how to live a joyful life that invites others to know, love, and follow Jesus. 

The highlights of the book include real-world examples and practical advice for everyday evangelism. To be effective, we must cultivate great expectations for what God has sent us to accomplish in this world, and also be wholly surrendered to whatever He would have us do.

In short, Jesus has invited everyone everywhere to call on His name and be saved. Are we living as believers who are sent and ready to extend the invitation from our Master?

“My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.”
John 5:17
A Real-Life Example

Mark Henthorn is the Executive Director of ChurchCare, a subsidiary of Baptist Church Planters focused on supporting churches on building projects or who are considering closure.

During a recent trip home from state meetings, Mark decided to eat dinner and read his Bible at a McDonald’s restaurant. Praise God that he did:

As I walked into the restaurant, a young couple saw the Bible in my hand and promptly told me, “We have some questions for you.” 

The young man began firing off questions regarding end times, assurance of salvation, and his perceived need for works. As my conversation with both of them continued, I was encouraged to discover that the young woman was firmly holding onto the Lord’s promises of Ephesians 2:8-9 and John 6:37. 

After 20 minutes I said to the man, “I have a four-session Bible study I think you’d enjoy doing with me,” to which the young man agreed. 

As I said goodbye to these two, praising the Lord for this unexpected opportunity, I took my place in line only to find He wasn’t finished yet. 

A young woman who had overheard my previous conversation, approached me for a five-minute Jesus conversation. She was encouraged by what I had shared, and wanted to share her faith in Jesus with me. I discovered she is a semi-truck driver and had just stopped in with her rig for supper.

I finished my meal feeling both physically and spiritually fed and was approached by a young McDonald’s employee who told me she was a new Christian, recently baptized and attending a local Christ-centered student community. Needless to say, she was excited about her faith and wanted me to know it! 

As I was talking with her, a second employee stopped by to tell me that she too was a member of this same student Christian community and was transferring from Kirkwood College to Iowa State University this fall. She was already planning her church membership and campus student ministry involvement while in Ames. 

In just a couple couple hours after walking into McDonald’s, I left praising and thanking the Lord. I had been asking the Lord to give me one divine appointment a day and, on this day, He abundantly blessed me with five. Thank You, Lord.

—Mark Henthorn

Ask. Act. Repeat.

Mark’s story is surprising if we only read it at a surface level. A worldly analysis of this story would ask a question like: What are the odds of 6 people wanting to engage with a complete stranger holding a Bible in a McDonald’s?

And yet, what we read at the end of Mark’s account reminds us that this isn’t a story about insane probabilities—it’s the story of a God who answers prayer and sends us into divine appointments in accordance with His will. 

Mark asked for one divine appointment each day, and our abundant and sovereign God brought him 5 in the span of a couple of hours.

It was a simple prayer: “Lord, use me today to reach one person who needs to hear from You.”

It was a simple act of faith: To study God’s Word in public and converse with those whom God brought near. 

For those who have been chosen, forgiven, and sent to tell others about Christ, the formula for everyday evangelism is simple:

Ask. Act. Repeat.

May we never grow tired in doing all three!

Baptist Church Planters exists to help church leaders build healthy disciple-making churches, and our Intentional Transitional Ministry (ITM) is just one of the many ways we strive to do that. If you need support or resources to generate real and sustainable fruit in the life of your church, please reach out to us today. We’d love to help.

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