What is the value of a conversation?

Some of our chatty moments are water-cooler mundane…weather-related, insipid gossip, holiday reminisces.  Forgotten words with no lasting impact.

Other conversations are freighted with “forever” moments that have divine potential to shape destinies.

I call them eternal trajectory conversations.

Have you had one recently?

What started out as a short stay at a Windsor, ON Airbnb became so much more for Leah and John Smitthes.  This Christian couple rented out a room to married immigrants, Hamid Kokab, a student, and Samira Bashiri, a veterinarian.

Leah herself had been an immigrant to Canada and she knew that her renters were lonely in a new country.  She told them not to worry; her home would be their “home away from home.”

As time went by Leah and her husband had conversations with their Muslim renters about Jesus.  Hamid and Samira wanted to know why Jesus had died on a cross, and how he could live again.

They talked about how the Koran referred to Jesus as a prophet, but Leah said this Jesus could do miracles and her renters were fascinated.

Samira was desperate to get a job here in Canada.  She said to Leah, “I have a poor resume.  Can you pray in the name of this Jesus so that I will get a job?”

Leah told her that since Jesus was the God of miracles, she would pray and that she believed God would land a job for Samira.

A month later Samira was employed!

And then a stunning tragedy struck that rocked Canada and the world.

Hamid and Samira died when missile fragments exploded and destroyed the Ukraine passenger shortly after it took off from the airport in Tehran.

A while later Leah was talking to a friend from another church about Hamid and Samira.  Her friend said that she had been doing evangelism and had met with Hamid and Samira who told her they knew Jesus and believed in him.

Who would have expected?

An Airbnb conversation had turned into an “eternal trajectory” moment.

(You can hear this remarkable story by checking out Lorna Dueck, at Context TV, and listen to her interview with Leah.)

Could it be that in 2020 the circumstances of our Corpath lives will bring someone across our path whom God has ordained to have an “eternal trajectory” conversation with us?

This likely is what Paul had in mind as he wrote to the Colossians and said,

“Let your conversation always be full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”  (Colossians 4:6)

And sometimes those conversations just might happen at a water cooler.

Like Jesus…stopping, weary and thirsty at midday by Jacob’s well (sort of the first century equivalent of the water cooler) and having a divine conversation with a woman whose eternal trajectory, and that of her community, would be forever changed.  (John 4)

I’m praying that 2020 will be replete with eternal trajectory conversation moments for each of us…in our offices, at the family table, across the back fence.

Who knows if someone we talk to just might soon be getting onto an airplane?

Blessings for fruitful, God-ordained conversations this week and throughout 2020.