While discussing whether or not coincidences exist, my wife used the word "incident," in saydescribing what God crafts in our world. She recently experienced an incident which appeared so out of the ordinary that she felt it was a small miracle. I am blessed by experiencing these all the time. This matter is related to two different Wills of God: what is His Will (what would He prefer), and that all things are within His Will (power and control). God-incidents versus coincidence is obviously a difficult concept for the finite human brain. To believe that God organizes events before the beginning of time such that, for instance, we miss being in a car crash by 2 seconds, may be more easily dealt with by attributing this to the laws of nature and good fortune. However, for those who believe in a God who is good, omnipotent, active and present, the small leap of faith yields great rewards. I do not say small because it is easy...the faith of a child generally becomes more and more difficult for adults to enjoy, and it is even harder for a rich man, since this entails depending solely on the power and desier of God to take better care of us, at all times, than we would of ourselves at any time. One portion of the reward is a glance into the realm of the Real, for our struggle is not bound by this physical world, but against spiritual powers and principalities (Ephesians 6:12).
Most sane individuals desire to know what is real: a desire ranging throughout history from Plato's cave to the movie The Matrix. However one's sanity may be called into question anyhow when making such statements as "God knows the number of hairs on every human head on earth" (Matthew 10:30, Luke 12:7). Or consider this:
Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith!
(Matthew 6:26 ff)
If God is also personal and desires to have a relationship with us, why would He not want to design small and great events in our lives, before the beginning of time, to draw us closer to Him? What is difficult for us to conceive is a snap of the Almighty's fingers. While discussing this matter with another friend, I suggested the challenge of thinking that God is in control of all things, and nothing we do can ultimately change His Will (which one?) Andy replied that our response is one of responsibility. We are responsible to the extent that we are capable, and God uses our efforts to make us grow.
Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. James 4:8