The phrase “day of visitation” is mentioned frequently throughout the Word of God. When the exact phrase itself is not used, there are other parallel passages used, that mean the exact same thing in the original Greek and Hebrew. A couple of examples of this powerful phrase are found in I Peter 2:12 and Luke 19:44. The Old Testament meaning is generally related to judgment on Israel, as well as judgment, punishment, trials and persecution on individuals and other nations as well. It usually refers to the final judgment but can also point to the judgments and trials of our earthly journey. In the New Testament, however, overtones of God’s mercy and kindness are related to this passage. The implication is that “living for the Lord,” as well as a clean and holy lifestyle in general, will have a great and positive effect on the believer in the day of visitation. I believe this scripture relates not only to our death and judgment (Hebrews 9:27), but to judgments and trials that happen to us on the planet earth. We all have them and desire God’s blessing when we are “in the bubble” and we must cry out to the Lord. I just had such an experience on Thursday, 10/13/11, at about 5-5:30PM while driving northbound on I-95 in North Carolina. After the dust settled, all I could think of was that the Lord’s mercy showered down on me on the day of my visitation. I did not like the experience at the time, but now I gratefully place it in my personal life’s history. Thank you Jesus.
There were three lanes of traffic and I was traveling in the center lane at about 70 MPH. It was sunny outside, the traffic was moderate, and everything seemed fine. Out of the blue, the driver in front of me came nearly to a complete stop for no apparent reason. There was no logjam of traffic ahead. (After speaking with the driver’s passenger who was their spouse, it became clear that the individual who was driving was very tentative in driving in general). As mentioned, I was driving at 70 MPH and this nearly stopped vehicle was only a matter of “so many feet” in front of me. I slammed on the brakes and it was obvious that this would not be enough and I would crash violently into their rear. Having had an extensive law enforcement background with four emergency driving schools I attended during the late 70’s and early to mid 80’s, the instincts that were programmed in my brain all kicked into place. I swerved the car to the left lane and by the grace of God it was vacant! (While this is all happening during the microseconds following, I am envisioning having a totaled vehicle in no man’s land, police and ambulances responding to a multi car accident where folks are injured, air bags going off, law suits, and some of my needed R&R going up the river). I found the left lane all right without striking the car ahead of me, and because I swerved into the left lane both suddenly and violently, my car went into the fishtailing that would be expected. I countersteered in the direction of the rear of my car that was swerving. I did this several times (I could not say how many), managing to stay in the left lane the entire time. Finally, I lost it, and the car spun 180 degrees and partially left the road and it looked like I was on my way to eat some guardrail. The vehicle slowed down, however, only partially went off of the left lane and only my passenger tires were off of the road as the vehicle came to a complete stop The traffic on I-95 must have been surprised to see me facing them, partially on the shoulder and partially on the left lane. The Lord quickly gave me a break in traffic and I pulled a U turn, drove to the right shoulder and spoke with the folks who I nearly hit at a high rate of speed. The gentleman came out and was mesmerized that there was not as much as a nick on my vehicle. Like a deer in the headlights he just stared at the vehicle. I told him that I was just testing my suspension, steering and brakes……just kidding. I obviously gave praise to the Lord and His employed angelic host who tended to this entire scene. (Icing on the cake was the fact that balancing and an alignment were not even needed). I have never had an opportunity to give thanks to God in a greater way in my life for watching over me. The more I pray, the more I am afraid not to pray! It is truly a nightmare to ponder over the possible outcome and ramifications had not God intervened. The Lord truly showed Himself strong in this, my hour of need. Thank you Jesus! Pastor Steve