What a Coincidence!
I love words. I really enjoy the study of origins and proper use of the English language. The right word in the place can make all the difference when it comes to effective communication.
The admin for our Christian Ed’ department, Demie Rainey, has several degrees in English. She’s a former educator and has even taught English as a second language. Demie is one of my favorite people. I enjoy our chats about words and linguistics. She can listen to a person speak and pretty much guess what state they’re from and often what part of that state. Amazing!
Recently, I shared with Miss Demie my fascination of the word coincidence. We’ve heard people say, “There’s no coincidence in God.” It occurred to me that “coincidence,” comes from the word incident-something that happened. If you’ve ever had to complete an incident report, you’re nodding your head right now. Even though we Americans use the word to describe an accident or happenstance, a co-incident would accurately describe the occurrence of two things happening at the same time.
This being true, we’d all have to admit that there indeed are co-incidents in God. God Himself beautifully orchestrates perfectly-timed coincidences. It’s no fluke that Jesus was crucified on Passover. He is after all, our Passover Lamb. Recently I discovered that it wasn’t by chance that the Holy Spirit came to dwell in those first few Christians on the day of Pentecost.
I had the pleasure of sharing a meal with Karen, a beautiful Messianic Jew Friday night, the beginning of Pentecost week-end. She shared with me that the Feast of Pentecost was in celebration of the day Moses received the law on Mt. Sinai. “What a coincidence!” I said. It’s on that same day that the Holy Spirit came to live in those first new-testament believers and write the law of God on our hearts. Karen explained the perfect correlation (another of my favorite words). Fire and smoke and thunder came from the mountain while the 10 commandments were being written in stone tablets. Onlookers were afraid, not knowing what was going on. Likewise Holy Spirit was given with a rushing wind and tongues of fire! On lookers were confused and thought the men were drunk.
Before Jesus, men attempted to live by the Law of Moses and the multitude of laws added since. Christ-followers now live according to the leading of the Spirit. “If you are lead by the Spirit you will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.” God has fulfilled His promise to write His law on our hearts. Our hearts of stone have been exchanged for a heart of flesh. Holy Spirit causes us to be soft-hearted both toward God and other people.
Here’s the kicker! As we enjoyed our time together, not only did we realize that our meeting had been “coincidentally” planned for Pentecost week-end, but the family who volunteered to host our gathering lived in Wheatfield, IN. Get it? Pentecost… harvest…wheat? Aaah never-mind. It’s probably just a coincidence.