And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28 NIV


A little over six months ago, I was preparing for the upcoming Chapel service on Sunday, June 9, which also happened to be Pentecost Sunday 2019. I so wanted this day not just to be another Sunday, but rather a Sunday our Chapel family would not soon forget.

What I didn’t know was just how unforgettable this Sunday would turn out to be.

Sunday came and I felt like we had planned the perfect Pentecost Sunday. We were backstage in the Chapel, lined up and ready to go. Suddenly, with a loud crack of thunder, the lights went totally out!

The Chapel was completely full. I Immediately made an announcement: “Folks, please remain calm. We have people working to restore power and I’m sure that we’ll be up and running soon.”

Interestingly enough, no one left.

I asked the Chapel congregation, who was still patiently sitting there, to take out their cell phones and use the lights to create our own candlelight service. We sang hymns, choruses, Scriptures, and even the choir sang–all by candlelight and iPhone lights. After preparing the Pentecost service, I even had a nice little homily on the Spirit ready to go.

The next day during dinner, my wife, Sandi, asked me, “How was that Pentecost Sunday no one would ever forget?” That’s when it hit me. The spiritual lesson completely unfolded before me.

I originally thought the day was a wash. Why couldn’t the power have stayed on? I had such a good plan!

Instead of my plan, our Heavenly Father knew just the right way to pull together a Pentecost service that we certainly would never forget. It just didn’t look anything like I had thought.

Could that be the same for my life? My family? My children and their futures? Lord, could your plans look completely different than I think?


In 2020, as this new year of possibilities and plans begins to unfold, let’s pray from a little different angle. Let our prayer be for our senses, our seeing, and our hearing, knowing what he is doing in and through our lives. The Scriptures remind us, “He is doing all things for the good in our lives” (Romans 8:28). And, “That we can trust him with all of our heart, not leaning on our own understanding, but acknowledging him in all our ways, and he will make our paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6).

Don Peslis

Pastor of Chapel Worship


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