A few months ago, my family and our friends experienced the presence of God in our midst through a providential event that still has us waiting with anticipation to see what will happen next through these circumstances. Maybe the purpose of this is simply to keep us watchful and focused on God more, but I am believing there is more to come! Here is what happened:
Four years ago we met a new couple on their first visit to our church as we served at the Connection Center. This was a regular weekly occurrence in this ministry, however, this couple was set apart from the others and we became very close friends that developed into being our prayer and accountability partners as we walk out our life in Christ together. A year ago they sold their home here and moved out of town for full-time pastoral ministry work. We prayed with them through finding a home to rent in their new area for many months, with God closing the door on a few occasions. While our family was away on vacation, they decided to expand their search to a wider geographical circle and by the time we returned home, they had closed a deal on a town home to rent. Our first visit to their new home was met with an eery familiarity when we crossed the threshold. My husband and I shared a glance and both mused that we had been in a house just like this before…stating that it was the same floor plan as my aunt Lois’ home back in the 1990s when she moved to California from Myrtle Beach, SC. She was a favorite aunt throughout my childhood that we visited annually back East, but my family had only visited her one time here in California for her housewarming. We had taken many family pictures on that day, unbeknownst to us that it would be the last day we would ever see her. She had developed Alzheimer’s, was moved to a care facility and her family sold her home after her death in the early to mid 2000’s. Upon hearing our musings, our friends looked bewildered and reached over to grab a piece of junk mail on the counter addressed to my aunt that had been delivered to their home. This had actually been my aunt’s home! It had been owned by another person for ten years and recently put up for rent, but Lois received that junk mail just before our visit. If that hadn’t already been enough to have us all reeling in awe of the odds and this being a “God thing”, we stepped outside and the backyard still had the same fountain that our family pictures were taken in front of two decades earlier and our friend then brought out a slim, leather-bound photo holder that they found upon removing shelving from the garage wall. Despite another owner living there for a decade in between my aunt and our friends, that picture was a military picture of my uncle’s, who had been the secretary under the Secretary of Defense in the Pentagon back in the day! Now…we were all on our knees before Jesus Christ with many tears flowing.
In my opinion, there is no chance that all of this was mere chance. We have a God who knows, who sees, who cares and who prepares the way for us. Stay tuned for what God shows us next for what He plans on doing with us and our friends in or through my aunt’s home. I believe there is more to come…and I KNOW that it will be GOOD, because our God is good all the time.
Sometimes the odds of an event are such that the best explanation is simply, “It must be a God thing,” God’s providence. Who can understand it? It is the timely preparation for future eventualities that only God could orchestrate with such precision. The Twilight Zone experience that brings one to his/her knees in praise and awe of our God. We all probably have had at least one encounter with God in this way, but maybe we didn’t rationalize it as being God at work, because let’s face it…as humankind, we most often like to have the answer and take the credit whenever possible. But our God yearns to be acknowledged in all things and ways.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom.