Coincidence: A striking occurrence of two or more events at one time apparently by mere chance.
On Wednesday July 13th, I was driving my usual route home after an exhausting day at work. My plan was to get home as quickly as possible, flop on the first horizontal piece of furniture I came to and not move until the next morning. Relishing in that plan, I received a phone call about half way home. It was from my youth pastor’s wife. She informed me that they were short-handed and wondered if I could help out with the youth meeting that night. Maybe it was the exhaustion speaking, but I said yes, turned my car around and headed back to the church. Committed? No, crazy is more like it.
Utterly depleted, I made my way back down the all too familiar road. Suddenly, I saw flashing lights up ahead. Policemen waved me around the scene of the wreck, and being a Police Officers daughter, I instinctively commenced in a 30 second investigation. A man had flipped his car into a ditch! The vehicle was a complete pancake and standing beside the car was the driver.
Yes I said standing. Not a miss-type.
He had one small hairline laceration on his forehead.
“Woah! Isn’t he the lucky one!” I thought out loud.
Wrapping up youth group night, the Youth Pastor’s wife caught me and asked if I was planning to attend this amazing event called Motion Conference. I told her no, maybe next year. She handed me a Leaders packet, told me to think about it and to let her know if I were interested by Friday. I looked over the packet when I got home and discovered that the conference was scheduled during our family vacation to the beach. I threw my hands in the air with the deciding evidence that I could not go. No way was I about to cut my trip to paradise short! I had worked too hard and too long for a well deserved break with my family. No!
Usually I wake up early and spend some time talking with God about the contents of the day and the agenda He has for me. But on this particular Thursday morning, I knew exactly what God wanted to talk about and frankly I did not want to hear it. So, I did what any God-loving christian girl would do…
I hit the snooze button.
Driving to work I passed by the wreck scene and thought about the incredible miracle that that man survived! “He must have some agenda from God!” I thought out loud.
That was it.
I broke the silence.
“God, I feel like Jonah. And, well, we’re going to the beach and I really don’t want to be swallowed by a whale!”
Friday morning rolled around. Naturally I woke up before my alarm went off and “coincidentally” I decided to listen to Church of the Highlands pod-cast from last Sunday. The title: “The Heart of a Servant.”
As I listened to Pastor Hodges talk I began making a mental list of every reason I should not cut my trip short to attend this conference. Money, comfort, and self. Then something happened that I will NEVER forget. He started breaking down those excuses one by one!
What does a servant look like?
~Worship over wealth: A servant worships God through giving of time and money.
~Character over comfort: A servant chooses to leave his comfort to comfort the comfortless.
As he began to wrap up his teaching. I came up with my final excuse. “I’ll just sponsor someone else to go. That way I don’t have to leave my family and someone else will stand in my place.” As soon as the thought entered my mind, he spoke a sentence express mailed from heaven.
“If you have a vacation planned, postpone it or cut it short.”
The message from Wednesday night flashed back into view, “God doesn’t place you coincidentally in a random place with random people presenting you with random opportunities.”
My college’s motto, “You have a purpose.”
Each of these messages “coincidentally” and instinctively flowing together.
Once my parents woke up I told them all I had experienced.
Instead of looking at me as if I were crazy or rejecting the idea, they nodded and immediately started to help me plan and budget.
“Coincidentally” I received my payment from work that evening.
“Coincidentally” I had overtime. Which meant not only do I have enough to attend the conference, I had MORE than enough!
Needless to say, I called up my youth pastor’s wife and informed her that I WOULD be cutting my vacation short, and I WOULD be attending that conference.
I do not personally believe in coincidences. Odd or random happenings that happen just because.
I believe in a God with an agenda.
Things coincide for a reason.
I do not know the outcome and needs of everyone’s lives.
Shoot I do not even know the outcome and needs of my own life!
But I know someone who does. And will follow him through fire, rain or coincidentally placed spurts of opportunities.
We are not called to be stagnant, we are called to be different.