Monday, July 19, 2010

Happenstance

He gave my small son a map and asked that if he should see a fire, he call the forest ranger immediately. A small boy stood in awe.

Sometimes I wonder at the forces that work in our lives. How things fall into place by coincidence, by happenstance (golly I love that word). My sister and I discovered that we often bought my mother the same birthday and Mother's Day cards. Peg lives on one coast and I the other. We never wrote often, but invariably our notes would pass in the mail somewhere mid USA. Coincidence? Intuitive connection of sisters?

Life has not always been easy. My life is a constant walk with God, so He should know my circumstances. Whenever I was down to my last penny, a random check would come in the mail. It could be a refund, something from the bank, whatever weird thing had happened in the unknown to place a check in my mailbox. My son was living with me at the time couldn't believe the coincidence. I think he almost watched the mail to see when my prayers would be answered. Sure enough a check would show up.

I run into people I know constantly. My kids have this belief that no matter where I am, no matter what country I visit, airport I sit in, beach I walk on, I will find someone I know. It happens more times than not.

My parents were visiting along with my young nephew. Our site seeing trip was going to take us up through the forests on Mt. Hood. Warning signs were posted with Smokey the Bear asking that we watch for forest fires. My young son immediately became a fan of this bear wearing pants and a hat. Our trek up the mountain ended at the tree line at Timberline Lodge. As we walked up the stair to the lodge the door opened and, lo and behold, Smokey the Bear walked out. My son could hardly contain his excitement. Smokey kneeled down next to my son handing him a map of the Mt. Hood forests. Of course, by a young boy's request, he autographed it.

"You can help me fight forest fires by looking for them. If you see one, you can call the forest ranger," he said. "Can you do that?"

Well, my son would have done anything for Smokey. On our return trip, a small boy became a special forest ranger spotting for forest fires.

Coincidence? Fate? The element of surprise that often captures us and makes us wonder. I don't know what it is, but I am thrilled each time it happens. Happenstance.

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