If you are reading this, there’s a good chance you’ve encountered one of those situations in which the timing of otherwise unrelated events are simply too well-timed to be considered an accident. Often, despite our fear that our stability and comfort will be lost, we find these situations work out for the best. Many people attribute these coinciding events to "the universe", or "destiny", or will state that "things happen for a reason". With each of these statements, they indicate there is some form of governing intelligence, overarching plan or specific purpose. Yet they stop short of naming or defining the very intelligence or purpose they allude to. But not Joe. Joe has another name for it.
Toward the end of summer of 2013, Joe received a call from a former colleague with some interesting news. After exchanging pleasantries, the real purpose of the call came to light: Joe's employer had been looking to fill the very position that Joe had been holding for some time now. This was not welcome news. Without any notice, the company that had gained from Joe's service for 24 years had decided to replace him.
Joe read the writing on the wall. He immediately started hunting for a new position and began posting on online job sites. He informed his wife Karen and they began praying daily, involving their friends and the church in their united prayer effort.
Before long, Joe had an interview conducted by a gentleman named Tom. Joe described feeling quite good about the interview until a specific and memorable moment in which he suddenly felt "cold". His feeling was validated when the interview ended without any positive communication… not the ending he was hoping and praying for. He heard nothing more from them for two months.
Joe tells the story of October 23rd with clarity. Nearly two months had passed since that interview and Joe had continued to search for a new job. Out of the blue, he received an email from Tom, asking if Joe was still interested in the job. Joe replied in the affirmative. Later that exact same day, Joe's manager brought Joe to his office for an unannounced meeting. Joe walked in, saw a corporate human resources employee waiting for him and had no doubts about the purpose of the meeting.
“I guess it’s my time to go, eh?” Joe asked.
The response? “Yep.”
Twenty-four years of service was reduced to a simple conversation.
Over the next month or two, Joe had a few more meetings with Tom and was eventually hired to work for this new company. Now, several months later, Joe speaks of the benefits of working for this company: better pay, better working environment and more in tune with his personal values. This company is pretty much better in every conceivable way.
As Joe looks back, he openly acknowledges God’s work in his life. He commends his wife’s relationship with God as being instrumental in his perception and surrender throughout the situation. Joe’s family has seen the Lord at work and he speaks of his children as having observed the truth of this “coincidence”.
So, what does Joe have to say about the fact that the email that heralded his future new position arrived the very day he was let go? All along the message he received from his incredibly supportive wife and from those all around him: wait upon the Lord. Joe acknowledges the difficulty of actually living in accordance with this command. Yet, it’s clear to him that this coincidence was God’s providence.
Author: Jonathan Allain