March 25, 2014

What To Do With A Coincidence

By John Scully

Sometimes we experience coincidences that make us stop and think, is there something more than just a coincidence happening here?

The P.O. Box number where I work at Christian Aid Mission is 9037.

Is it only a coincidence that I happened to be in line at the DMV and when it was my turn to register my car the worker picked off the pile license plate number 9037 and assigned to me?

Strange, I thought, but surely it is only a coincidence.

Recently while traveling with my wife to the Dominican Republic, I met a former co-worker whom I had not seen in four years at the JFK airport in New York City. Neither of us lives close to New York, but we met there, between flights, each traveling in different directions.

Again a coincidence.

In my home Bible Study group we are studying the missionary journeys of the Apostle Paul in Acts. It seems he ran into many coincidences.

When Paul was walking at the Areopagus, looking for a way to share about the true God, he happened upon an altar to an Unknown God. Instead of passing it by, he seized upon this circumstance to tell about the Creator God.

When Paul and Silas were in prison an earthquake suddenly occurred, unleashing their bonds. Instead of fleeing the prison, they stayed and witnessed to the jailer.

Paul was a missionary who knew how to use every situation for the glory of God. Many times they were coincidences, but he turned them into opportunities to talk about God.

Such is the life and purpose of a native missionary.

Frequently they walk into situations where an opportunity to share the gospel opens.

This is especially true for native missionaries who live in lands where Christians are persecuted, where they are not able to hold open air meetings or crusades, and in some cases where they are not permitted to gather as a group or meet in a church building. In these places missionaries must view every situation, every coincidence, every circumstance as a time to witness. Indeed, they EXPECT opportunities and consider them God-appointed moments.

Christian Aid exists to help indigenous ministries provide the means for their gospel workers to go out and mingle with people and look for opportunities to share Christ. Servants, ready to move at the slightest coincidental moment, and turn a "chance" meeting into an evangelistic event.

We received the following note from one native missionary:

"It was 8 o´clock in the evening. I found a mobile phone on the road. Obviously some motorcyclist had dropped it. I picked up the phone, but did not turn it off. I was sure the owner would call to claim it. After an hour I received a phone call from a woman inquiring about the phone. I asked her to send someone to collect the phone. I would meet the person in a nearby tea shop. After a while a young man arrived, looking for me. I offered him a cup of tea and witnessed to him, telling him that it was God who let it happen so that I could give him a copy of Scriptures. He thanked me and accepted the book with gratitude and promised to read it. Since then, he is in touch with me, telling me he is reading the Scriptures regularly."

Whenever someone in America chooses to sponsor a native missionary through Christian Aid, they are opening the door for a missionary to take God´s Word out into the world so that lost souls may hear it.

"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God," Romans 10:17 (KJV).

Maybe it is a coincidence that you are reading this now.

But if you think it is more than that, why not sponsor a missionary?