Lucky vs. Providence

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Viewpoint


Photo from Watchmojo
The attempted terror plot to blow up Northwest Flight #253 on Christmas Day was barely avoided. For all the passengers on that flight, it must have been a humbling and sobering thought to know that Christmas Day 2009 could have been their last day here on this earth.

Once the plane landed safely, each passenger was interviewed by the FBI. As some of them gave interviews with news outlets, one word that I kept on hearing was “lucky.” In fact, David Schilke was one of the passengers that used the word “lucky.” He was traveling with his wife and 5-year old son. They were on that flight because they missed their original flight from Moscow by 30 minutes. You can read the e-mail he drafted to send to his friends here.

I just find it fascinating how our worldview determines how we see and interpret the events that happen in our lives. There is a stark difference between a secular worldview, where everything is run on “luck” and human choices, while for the Christ-follower, our worldview is based on a Sovereign God who is in control of all things and gives permission for things to happen. It is a completely different way to look at things.

But the sad fact is that there are many Christ-followers who have the same worldview as those who do not know Christ. How many times have you heard Christ-followers say, “Good luck!” or “Man, am I lucky!” One can argue that what is said is not really what a person means, but the reality is that a lot of people forget about the Sovereignty of God in their lives. Without sounding judgmental or even Pharisaic, next you hear a Christ-follower say anything with the word, “luck” then somehow direct them to see the Providence and Sovereignty of God in their lives.

It is only when there are situations that are out of our control (i.e. near death experience) where we come to grips with the fact that we are not God and there is Someone who is greater than us that is running the show. We will either render everything in our lives by luck or we will see that there is a purpose for everything in life.

When we begin to see things with the latter perspective, we will then find a greater purpose and learn how to live every single day with a greater focus.

Counting Down

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Viewpoint


Photo by Daily World Buzz
As people have been counting down for the New Year, I just had a thought. There are a lot of things that we count down for on a regular – birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, vacation, and etc. But not all countdowns elicit the same response.

When I think about the countdown for our family’s return to the States, it brings out a bittersweet feeling. On one hand, I think it is going to be very emotional for me as I think about leaving a lot of things here. God has been doing some incredible things and I want to continue to be a part of it in the frontlines. Even with all the wonderful people I have met (and going to meet), it will be hard knowing that I will not be able to see them in a weekly or even a bi-weekly basis.

But then, with the things that have to be accomplished back in Ann Arbor and also reconnecting with some of the people that we have built relationships with over the years, the outlook of what is to come prepares us for the transition.

I was also thinking about my mortality. I am always wondering if every New Year will be the last year for me here on this earth. This is not the kind of thing that we normally want to be thinking about, but it is a reality.

What if we knew exactly when our departure from this earth will be? In the Bible, King David said, “Show me, O LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man’s life is but a breath” (Ps 39:4-5).

With each passing breath, we know that it is a step closer to our death. For some reason, this puts a passion in me. Not only because of the reality of seeing Jesus face-to-face, but having a desire to fulfill God’s purposes in me.

Even though we do not have the luxury of knowing when we will pass away, we can live every day as if it was our last. It will completely change our perspective. It will help prioritize what is important. It will help us live dependently on God.

The year 2010 will have many new things in store for us, but we just don’t know the exact time of when those things will come. This is why living a life of a Christ-follower is about living by faith and trust. It makes it more fun.