Lucky Chance or God?

            The young woman’s liver stopped functioning. Rushed to ICU, doctors placed her on the transplant list while family and friends prayed for healing. Days passed. She hovered between life and death when her liver inexplicably returned to normal functioning. JIT…Just in time.

            Across town, my mother faced vascular surgery to restore circulation that a less invasive procedure failed to deliver. Overnight and one week before the scheduled surgery, her pain disappeared and circulation improved. JIT. She cancelled surgery.

            That same day, I pressed against a deadline to reach three senior leaders. I needed their sign-off  by close of business to effect a change in our course of action. One walked into my office when I was mid-sentence, leaving him a message. Another walked back into her office just in time to pick up my call on the fifth ring. As she signed off, the last leader returned my voicemail, “My conference call ended early. I wanted to catch you before the next one starts in five minutes.” Within twenty minutes, I snagged all three. They agreed to the new approach. JIT.

            Days later, a manager passed on a job opportunity. A last-minute change of heart prompted him to throw his name in the ring the final hour before the application process closed. JIT. He won the promotion over other candidates.

            Just in Time references a training approach in which students receive information, skills, or resources just before they are needed to perform critical tasks. Because the training ties immediately with actual work, participants are less likely to forget the content.

            God works just in time, too. Like when the Red Sea parted JIT for the Israelites to cross ahead of the Egyptian army (Exodus 14.) Or when the raging Jordan River dried to a trickle JIT for these same Israelites to cross over into the Promised Land (Joshua 3:15-16.) Colin Humphreys wrote in his Epilogue to The Miracles of Exodus, “When the whole sequence of events happens at just the right moment, then it is either incredibly lucky chance or else there is a God who works in, with, and through natural events to guide the affairs and the destinies of individuals and of nations.”

            So, lucky chance or God? I believe the latter. This month, I am blessed to witness God working JIT. His miracles may either defy nature or…as with those described here… occur within its bounds but with precision timing. Just in time timing as only a sovereign Lord might arrange. And, as with Just in Time training, I am unlikely to forget the series of natural events that occurred precisely at the right moment for deliverance.

            What about you? Where have you seen perfectly timed events that could only be God at work?

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6, NIV)


About Gloria Ashby

I'm a writer, speaker and teacher. I live with my husband in the DFW area, and close to our daughter and her family.
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2 Responses to Lucky Chance or God?

  1. Sarah says:

    My now husband was waiting and waiting for his work visa so he could move down to Texas from Canada. There was a long delay, but it eventually came through. He was having trouble wrapping up his affairs (selling his car and much of his furniture), but everything came together just in time for his planned move. He met my plane in Seattle, and we made the five-day drive home. We arrived on 9/5/01, and he settled into his new apartment. Just six days later, terrorists bombed the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Our whole world was turned upside down, which made me so thankful that he was with me. Just ten days after he’d crossed over, the borders were sealed. There’s no telling how long it would have taken for him to immigrate if he’d still been in Canada.

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