Every day on my way to work I pass a U-Haul storage facility. Most of the time, their marquee sign has a funny little saying that gives me a chuckle, or sometimes a wise quip that I can nod in solidarity with. However, a couple of weeks ago, they changed their sign. “Coincidence is God's way of staying anonymous” is what it states. And it bothers me immensely.
I've had countless discussions with my husband, close family, and even some friends lamenting the state of our nation. It's become conditioned with anger and offense, teeming with racism and resentment, with prejudice and assumptions, and everyone has an opinion that one must agree with or one is labeled with a myriad of identifiers denouncing the offender as the worst of mankind. Violent crimes and predatory offenses litter our news on a daily basis. Truth be told, humanity is spiraling, and it seems every politician and follower of politics has an answer for why, and they all blame each other. Yet, the fault lies squarely with us, the Followers of Christ. Why? Because we have allowed God to be anonymous.
Acts 17:24-28 says, “The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, 25 nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. 26 And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, 27 that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, 28 for ‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are indeed his offspring.’”
Did you catch that? 'That they should seek God, and find their way to Him and FIND Him.' He doesn't just want to be found, God wants to be known. God, who created the universe and named the stars (Gen 1:1), calls you to know Him. God, who breathed the breath of life into every creature (Gen 2:7) and tells the sea where to begin and end (Gen 1:7), calls you to find Him. God, who knit you together in your mother's womb (Ps 139:13) and knows the number of hairs on your head(Luke 12:7), invites you to talk with Him. God never desires to be anonymous. No, the Bible tells us explicitly that God wants us to seek Him, to find Him, and to know Him. Anonymity is not something that should ever be attributed to God, nor is it something He wants.
Ephesians 2:10 declares, “For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.”
My father always says, “There's no such thing as coincidence with God.” And what glorious truth! See, God not only wants to be known, but He wants to be known through us, His people! The word 'coincidence' is translated from the Greek word synkyrian, which is a combination of two words: sun and kurios. Sun, in Greek, means “together with” and kurious means “supreme in authority.” So biblically speaking, the word coincidence would mean “what occurs together by God's providential arrangement of circumstances.”
In Isaiah 46:9-11 we read God's declaration that He is completely in charge of everything. “9 Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me. 10 I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, ‘My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.’ 11 From the east I summon a bird of prey; from a far-off land, a man to fulfill my purpose. What I have said, that I will bring about; what I have planned, that I will do.” (NIV)
Now, it's human nature to classify as coincidence those events that leave us surprised or are unexpected. However, our surprise is not God's surprise. If God watches even the birds of the air (Matt 10:29) then no detail of our lives escape his design. The Bible declares that our sovereign God “causes all things to work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28) It even says that He causes the rain to fall on evil people and good people (Matt 5:45) This mean that in ways only God knows or understands, He takes our lives, our successes, our mistakes and He weaves them together to fulfill His purpose.
God has called each of us to make known His name. No more anonymity, but instead we must declare Him boldly and loudly. We are being beckoned to go deeper in knowing Him than ever before, but first, we must strip away the cloak of anonymity that we as believers have covered God with. It is time to proclaim that God is here to save the lost, and each opportunity given to share Him is designed and purposed for His glory!
Lord, help us remember that you know us intimately, and so desire that we should know You as well. Cause our hearts to burn for You, and our minds to focus completely on You! Amen!