Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | April 29, 2016

The Power of a Moment

We can all look back on moments that seemed so ordinary at the time they occurred but with the passage of time became defining moments that impacted the course of our lives. Steve Jobs said that you can only connect the dots by looking back. He was right. We can only understand the significance of particular moments by looking back at everything that was unleashed from that singular point in time.

I like the word unleashed because one of the Greek words from which we get our word moment is the word atomos. The words atom and atomic are also derived from this same word. In many cases, there is indeed something of an atomic potential hidden deep within some moments that when unleashed have a huge impact.

For me, one of those moments happened on the day I registered for my first semester of classes in college. As I was leaving the building, a man with a big smile walked up to me, shook my hand vigorously, and in his distinctive voice said, “Hi. My name is David Strickland and I want to be your friend!”

That was the moment — deceptively ordinary but, unbeknownst to me, was a moment that would set in motion a series of events that would change the course of my college days. There was indeed something atomic, something powerful, hidden in that moment.

David Strickland, it turned out, was the director of the Baptist Student Union on my campus. When he approached me he did not know me or anything about me — and yet he moved in my direction. He had no idea that I had only been a Christ-follower a little more than a year on that day when our lives intersected.

And, in that moment, I had no idea how God would use David’s friendship and mentoring to guide me into a deeper walk with Christ. He encouraged me to get involved in discipleship studies, campus evangelism, and plain old fun events at the BSU. Those years accelerated my spiritual growth and challenged me to take seriously how God might possibly use me to advance His purposes.

That moment on my college campus happened 42 years ago. And yet, the current that flowed out of that moment remains strong. That current has taken me to places I never imagined I would go and among people I never imagined I would serve. There was indeed something atomic in that moment — something unleashed by an act of kindness and a vigorous handshake.

I will be forever grateful for one man who took the initiative to move in my direction, shake my hand, and offer to be my friend. That seemingly ordinary moment changed everything for me. Imagine what might happen if we looked for those opportunities to do what David Strickland did. Be sensitive to those God puts in your path. Allow Him to use you to unleash the power of a moment in the lives of others.


  1. Wow, what a testimony… thank you for sharing this. It has been a blessing to read it. And a great reminder, too. 🙂 God bless you.

  2. David Strickland did something so simple and Christ- like we often overlook and that is to move toward people.
    The second step that God wants from us is a response to His initiative.
    Don’t know why but it’s a hard thing for men to do.
    Strickland made himself vulnerable when he said “I want to be your friend”
    Great story
    Jack Pearson

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