When I was a younger man I was taught by successful entrepreneurs that I needed to obtain as many friends and relationships as I could. This resulted in my going to as many trade show conferences that I possibly could, to collect business cards of people that I would randomly talk to. Then I would try to remain in contact with anybody I could find that would help me build my pyramid to success.
What I did not realize was that many of those relationships were draining from me the very force of success that God Himself was putting inside of me. It was like God was giving me money and I was putting it in my pockets, but my pockets had holes in them that were draining everything out of me. As a result I was always broke ~ not just monetarily but also spiritually.
It was at this time that the prophet Paul Cain came to me through a very incredible series of events. His secretary called me one day and said that Paul Cain wanted to meet me at his hotel. The next morning I went to the hotel and the front desk told me he had just checked out an hour before. They said he had left no message for me (or anyone else) about where he was going.
Two days later his secretary again called me and said Paul Cain was back at the same hotel and wanted to reschedule a meeting with me. But this time could I come by the hotel at 10 AM the next morning. When I got there the front desk notified me that Paul Cain had checked out a half hour earlier. And just like before, he left no word as to where he was going.
When I drove back to my house I was really curious about what was going on. Paul was supposed to speak at our church the next day, Sunday, and he never showed up for that event. I knew something had occurred but since I didn’t understand what was going on I just left it up to the Lord. Monday morning the secretary called me for the third time.
“I need to explain to you what has been going on,” she said. “Paul Cain had two heart attacks when he was at the hotel and they happened to him just an hour before your appointment with him. Paul is in the hospital in the Bay Area and felt that you might as well come and see him there because he must give a message to you.”
As you might imagine now I was really curious. What on earth was going on? This was one of my first times to meet Paul Cain in person so I immediately drove to the hospital. I found him lying in the bed with hospital wires and cords connected to his body! Though his condition looked pretty serious at that moment, he spoke to me about something that has affected my life ever since.
“Richard,” he said, “the Lord has taken me in a vision over California and I saw that all of the highways were deconstructed and the connections were cut off. God is deconstructing your personal highway and relationships and He is cutting off all your previous connections because He is going to reconnect you. But the Lord gave me a warning and said these connections will be made at 5000 feet, which means they are going to be very perilous and dangerous for you and the person you connect with. So you must be careful about every connection.”
I know this was an unusual way for God to speak to me about the friendships that He was going to give me, but it has made me realize how valuable each connection is and not to be taken lightly. As I have begun to meet new friends and form new relationships at this higher and more dangerous plane, I have realized how the fruits of the Spirit ~ love, joy, peace, gentleness, kindness, meekness, temperance ~ are attributes that are so important for the continuation and the care of each connection.
Not only am I to be friendly, kind, gentle, and loving with these people, but also I am to become an intercessor and pray for them that their success is blessed with the presence of God. Yes, I can’t connect with everyone I meet. It’s impossible to do such things. But I can connect with those that the Lord has chosen for me, and these I want to affect in the kindest, most gentle, most loving way that is humanly possible.
God is making my relationships my most valuable asset, and of course the diamond in the center of all of this is Jesus Christ Himself. When I wake up in the morning the first connection I want to make is with Jesus, and when He wants me to pass out spiritual gifts to the people He is connecting me with.
Right after I had finished writing the above sentence, one of my daughters came in and told me she had an emergency in the kitchen and that she needed eggs from the local grocery store. I hopped into the car and when I got to the local market I discovered there was only one carton left in the egg section. I grabbed it and headed to the cashier. I found there was a long line and time was ticking. I finally arrived at the cashier while holding the carton in my hand.
Suddenly the man behind me said, “Wait a minute!” He ran to the back of the store, got a reusable bag, brought it to me as I continued to stand line, held the bag open, and gently placed my item in the bag. I thanked him for his kindness and then completed the purchase. After I turned and left I didn’t notice I had forgotten my debit card on the counter of the register. The same gentleman picked it up and hurried out to give it to me.
I suddenly realized that the very thing I had been writing about in this blog was happening to me from this perfect stranger. He was so elegant and so kind in his actions. As I drove away from the local grocery store I wondered, “Had I met someone who was just like Christ?”