Thursday, June 18, 2009

No Coincidences

If you are God’s child…and we are, and you believe that He has a plan…and we must, then you come to the conclusion that there are no coincidences in life.

That does not exclude the idea that God has an ironic sense of humor.

He chose Moses, the guy with the speech impediment and some courage issues, to face Pharaoh and order the ruler to release his slaves/free labor force.

He created Eden, His idea of perfect life for His creation, in the area of what is now downtown Bagdad..certainly evidence of global climate change at least once.

He picked Peter, his impetuous disciple, the guy who often acted first and thought about it later, to build His church.

He selected Saul, a Roman citizen and strong enemy, to spread the Gospel in the first century. Even Paul had to chuckle over that one.

He has chosen the Bolingers, all comfy and soft, to navigate a difficult test.

The Plan. The Master Plan. Often, that plan is beyond our understanding so even as we ask, “Why?” He has to say, “You wouldn’t understand right now.” And we have to accept it. And we can when we rest in the love of our God.

In the last few months, there HAVE been situations that seem coincidental.

For example, several years ago, two young men, just past that magic 18-year-old protection, did something really stupid. It might have been a kid prank if they had been a tad younger. That prank began a series of events that resulted in major property damage. No matter that neither has ‘priors.’ They are in deep trouble.

Each hired a seasoned attorney to represent him and the cases have finally concluded. I was reintroduced to the other attorney. He has terminal cancer, only recently diagnosed. From all indications, and I’m not the final judge here, this other attorney is not a believer and is facing his end alone.

Coincidence? No. But why would God orchestrate this situation? Two different men, about the same age. Both facing the end of their lives. Their connection now is this years-old prank.

Another recent event.

Both Mike and I are invited to our high school’s 40th reunion. Now, that’s not a coincidence as we both graduated in 1969. Mike’s party is in July and we hope to attend. As he graduated from the local high school, many friends still live locally so his event is less of a ‘what’s-new-with-you’ meeting.

Mine will be held in Michigan in early October. There was a lot less mobility when I was growing up in Trenton, Michigan so some of my classmates were in kindergarten with me. These reunions are always such fun.

We plan to attend. However, when I connected with the lady who is the master planner, I told her about Mike and said that I might not be able to attend. She returned with the news that HER husband, also 57, has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, another quick-moving killer.

Coincidence? No, not in God’s world. But why would He orchestrate this similarity to a long-time friend?

Not for us to know at this time.

These situations and people may be part of our test. It may be that we are to be sensitive to their needs as we pray for ourselves. We have to be open to that. His plan is bigger than our little minds.

It’s easy to lose sight of this simple truth. Something ‘just works out.’ People ‘just show up at the same time.’ Two or three dramas intersect and help each move to satisfying conclusion. “Funny how that works.”

Not funny. No coincidences.

The mark of the Maker of the Master Plan.

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