Behind the Scenes

You were allotted this time and the place you live so that you would have the opportunity to know God.

Wow. Let that sink in. God gave you this time and day so you can find Him. He wants YOU to know Him.

“The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. 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, 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, for ‘In him we live and move and have our being.’….” Acts 17:24-27

Too often we dismiss God’s activity in our lives as “good luck” or a happy “coincidence.” And frequently, it isn’t until we look in the rear-view mirror that we see how God’s hand has directed our lives.

In my own life, I can see now how God used a move across the country to introduce me to my husband. I had no intention of dating, much less getting remarried. I just wanted a fresh start, and the Emerald Coast sounded like the perfect location to wash away the past.

Later, we moved to a small town outside of Dallas where we had no connections. It was there that I “stumbled upon” a job that led to an amazing career packed with experiences that challenged me to grow as a writer and as a person.

I could chalk up these gifts of a great husband and a very good career to fate or coincidence, but I believe there’s more to life than that. From where we are now, as “self-supported” (really, we know it’s God who provides for our income) missionaries in Ireland, I can look back and see how God purposefully crafted our location-independent careers over a period of years.

Little by little, piece by piece, our life’s puzzle has come together to create a beautiful picture. What makes it more breathtaking is that the picture isn’t one we could have imagined for ourselves 20 years ago when both of us were divorced and struggling financially, and even at times, spiritually.

I’m not saying that God micromanages our lives, but I do believe He presents us with opportunities to know and trust Him more every day. Those opportunities may come in the form of a new friend, a new job, or a conversation with a stranger. Our job is to recognize that, even when life isn’t going according to our plans, God is still at work behind the scenes.

What “coincidences” have helped you understand who God is or how He loves you?  Please share your story in the comments below.


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2 Comments to Behind the Scenes

  1. LM says:

    This is so spot on!!

    My main question has always been: how do we know that we are supposed to keep pushing or pushing out of our own self? Does that makes sense?

    • Erin Casey says:

      That’s a good question. Perhaps it’s a matter of praying that God makes us aware of opportunities and then paying attention to the nudgings of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes we get so fixed on our to-do list and what we “have” to accomplish TODAY that we forget to look around and notice the opportunities we have to talk with people. One of the things I’ve constantly had to remind myself of (especially as an fast-paced American living in a more-relaxed-paced part of Ireland) is that people are always more important than my to-do list. That “mantra” has helped diffuse the stress that pops up when my schedule gets thrown off track. If people are more important, maybe God has a reason for throwing a kink in my plans now and then.

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