Sovereign Serendipity

post date: January 30, 2011


On Friday my son Mark and I had the unique privilege of eating lunch with Dr. Mark Bailey, president of Dallas Seminary. When he asked where we wanted to go, I suggested going to a sandwich shop. So instead of some fancy place, we ended up at Lenny’s Subs. In that most relaxed atmosphere, we laughed and talked and shared a lot of stories.

When I asked Mark how the seminary had weathered the difficult economic downtown of the last several years, he said that all in all, things had gone pretty well. Lots of donors lost lots of money when the financial markets collapsed, but even so, the seminary has continued to move ahead.

As we drove back to the campus, Mark told us about how the Lord had provided for some particularly big needs in very unusual ways. People you might not have expected to help had stepped up to the plate. We were pulling into the parking lot when he said, “I call that sovereign serendipity.”

The word serendipity refers to something you discover that you weren’t looking for. The word normally has a bit of whimsy about it. A serendipity is a delightful surprise. Applied to the spiritual life, it means that we serve a God of great surprises. He can made an ax head float and he can part the Red Sea.

As we ended our time together, Mark Bailey added these two thoughts about sovereign serendipities:

1. God rarely does exactly what we expect him to do.
2. His movements cannot be predicted in advance.

This world is full of sovereign serendipities that come gift-wrapped as sudden surprises. Let that thought give you hope as we start a new week. You never know what the Lord is going to do. 

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Ray Pritchard
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