Serendipity vs. Providence

17 Nov

ser‧en‧dip‧i‧ty[ser-uhn-dip-i-tee] An apptitude for making fortunate discoveries by accident; or an instance of making such a discovery.

prov‧i‧dence[prov-i-duhns] a manifestation of benvolent care and guidance from God.

Which is it? Why do seemingly chance things and introductions (that turn out to be whiz bang) happen? I’ve written before about my feelings on God’s purpose vs. plan for each of us. I’m as sure as I can be that I am here to do something good, not just to wander through life. I beleive I (and you) have been given the awesome gift of “no autopilot.” God has a purpose for me, but doesn’t send a lightning bolt when I step out of line with some plan–there isn’t a specific step-by-step path I’m supposed to follow. But we all are told our true purpose (or maybe multiple ones), if we really listen carefully. I think our calling is more about procedure, behavior and actions than about a specific end game. It’s about how we live, not what we conquer. Otherwise, what’s left when the goal is accomplished? Are we done? Of course not. Mother Teresa never “finished” her work. Neither did Abe Lincoln or Dr. King. They were all relentless about thier purpose and the behaviors they lived and preached.

OK, off my soapbox. I should tell you why I’ve been thinking about this today (as I sit at Oscar’s Coffee on 26th and Marion Road in Sioux Falls, sipping some carmel apple cider). I had a meeting this morning that seemed like providence. It was with someone I actually met through this blog. She posted a comment about something totally unrelated to my work or hers. But it led to a meeting this morning about work, and I think it will further lead to a great partnership on a number of projects. When you’re work is about changing the world, like mine, it’s nice to run into folks who understand you and think in many ways like you do.

I think serendipity happens a lot, but providence is way more fun.

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Posted by on November 17, 2006 in God, Work


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