Saturday, January 31, 2015

Coincidence or God's Perfect Timing?

Coincidence: a remarkable concurrence of events or circumstances without apparent causal connection

I look for these coincidences, big or small, in my daily life. For example, if I make every green light on my way to work in the morning, I see that as a remarkable event. How did my pressing the accelerator at the right time or getting in the perfect flow of traffic result in my making all ten green lights over a 6-mile drive?

Now, I know that city planners collect data on the number of cars that travel a certain road, I know about those strips in the pavement that trigger the light, and I know that the light stays green for a certain time period. But, on the days I make every green light, I feel like I have beaten the system or I have been a witness to God’s perfect timing. I have a little celebration in my head and say a prayer of gratitude when this happens.

Recently, I experienced a wonderful example of remarkable events occuring without my doing anything to make it happen.

This coming summer, my family and I will be vacationing for three months in North Carolina. Last year, my husband and I bought a spot in a resort near Boone that is just beautiful and oh so cool. 

We, the whole family, are excited about going. We are going to several events (#1 is Taylor Swift concert), touring the Biltmore, hiking the local area and just getting to know the area and the people. 

Our place has community swimming, basketball, tennis, golf, fishing, etc., but the resort is mostly inhabited by retirees. A few children will be visiting grandparents, but for the most part, it's an older crowd. 

My week-long visits there last summer were fun, but I was also the taxi driver and the 24-hour-a-day entertainer of the children.
I was determined that things were going to be different this time. I have already contacted churches in the area to find out about vacation Bible schools and camps nearby for my 10-year-old granddaughter.

My adult son, Drew, who has Down syndrome, is a bigger problem. His whole social center is in our home town, Tallahassee. I have been searching for adult day programs and Special Olympic events happening around our summer place but wasn’t having any luck. I had emailed several long shots that I found on the internet but never got a response for anyone. I decided that I would wait until March to continue my search as I thought more summer activities would be planned during the spring.

Remarkable Event #1

Last week, I got a call from Daniel, a college junior and the leader of Drew’s local Young Life Capernaum club. Capernaum is a Christian group for people with special needs. Daniel had gotten permission from the Young Life organizers to take a Capernaum member to work as a camp counselor at a Young Life camp over the summer. He then asked if I thought Drew would be interested. He would be Drew’s coach, working alongside him and seeing to his needs. The only problem that Daniel could see was that they would have to work for an entire month.
The only hurdle was finding a Young Life camp that would fit his and Drew’s schedules. Our first choice, Windy Gap, is only 40 miles from our NC place, but no counselor spots were available.

Remarkable Event #2

I remembered that last summer my daughter had worked for a week at another camp in NC, Carolina Point, which is 90 miles from Boone. It’s a new camp and is specially designed for Capernaum groups with a zero-entry pool and other activities designed for people with various handicaps. I asked if a spot were available there.

This week, I was told that Daniel and Drew will be working at Carolina Point from mid-June until mid-July. Their job will involve taking campers to the top of the zip-line course, putting them in their harness, praying with them, sending them on their way. They will get to interact with every single camper.

When all of this worked out, I said a prayer of thanks to God for all the people who had orchestrated this. I am so very happy for both Drew and Daniel for this opportunity. It will be Drew’s first time away from family for such a long period, but it is a great way for him to become more autonomous. I’m sure we will visit him during that month, but for the most part, he will be finding his own way.

Was this a mere coincidence? Using that term makes this huge event sound trivial, and it is so much greater than simply making all of the green lights on the way to work. When all of the stars align, all of the energy flows toward one goal or outcome, all of the people working with just a little help from me -- that’s when I have to say that I have witnessed God’s perfect timing.