Posted by: John Adams | September 24, 2009

The Serendipity Lurking Behind an Orange Flyer

I was walking out of the campus Post Office a few weeks ago when an orange flyer tacked to the bulletin board caught my eye. It was a handwritten note advertising a caregiver position at a local family’s home, assisting an elderly man who had suffered a brain injury during a fall. I nearly passed it by, but on second thought I punched the number into my cell phone and scheduled an interview with Rachel, sister-in-law to Will, the man with the injury.

She met me at the library and asked if I had ever held a caregiver position before, to which I replied that I hadn’t. The interview might well have ended there had I not happened to mention that I grew up in Haiti. As it turns out, Rachel’s family were missionaries to India, Kenya and Honduras, and her daughter is currently teaching at a Christian school in Port-au-Prince. I was hired on the spot.

One of the perks of the job is that I make more money than I would have at any of the campus jobs to which I kept unsuccessfully applying for over a month after I returned from North Carolina. Furthermore, I get to walk to work (the house is only 2 blocks from campus), and when I get there, I thoroughly enjoy what I do since it consists of little more than being a pastor, interacting with, loving and taking care of a man who can no longer take care of himself. I only work 13 hours a week, which fits in nicely with school, and the people I work for are becoming more and more like family to me the longer I work there. All this from a flyer that I nearly passed by without thinking.

Isn’t God’s grace amazing? The Bible promises that if you “trust in the Lord with all your heart, leaning not on your understanding,” but “in all of your ways acknowledging Him,” he will “make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6). God has been teaching me more and more about simple trust in Him. The God who clothes the lilies will put clothes on my back as well. The One who works all things after the counsel of His will (Ephesians 1:11) finds no difficulty in working “John’s tuition” into the equation of “all things.”

The really exciting thing about living by faith is seeing how God works this process out in real time. I am coming to find out that He delights in “chance” happenings and strings of unlikely events. Put your trust wholly in Him, and who knows where the next orange flyer might lead? It could very well be the first link in a long chain of serendipitous events.

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