I’ve always been a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Even the smallest things.
I am here on this Earth because I have something to give to the rest of the world that was given to me by God. I have a purpose here. At many points in my life, I have realized this. Just recently, I was putting together a family history of my mom’s side of the family and drawing out an actual family tree. I learned that my mom had several miscarriages before being blessed with having me. The same thing happened to her mom (my grandma). Take that as well as the biological chance of me getting the genes I did (hello, biology major!) into account and it is crazy to think about how different life would be if any one of those events did not take place. [Fellow biology majors–genetic cross-over events will forever blow my mind.]
It’s crazy to think about what would have been different in Christianity if Jesus had inherited a different set of genes or had been born to a different family in a different time and place. Imagine if Jesus was born to a single mother and raised in the world we currently live in. He would probably have a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a college degree and many other things that you and I have (or are working toward). How would he communicate with his followers? Through social media, televangelism or would he still wander around the country spreading the good news by word of mouth? All of these things are something worthy of thinking about because God is here now in today’s ever-changing world. We just have to know where to look and what to look for.
I can think of a specific time at which I came to realize this notion of God being present in the world and Him giving us each something to give back to the world before we leave. It was December of my sophomore year of high school and my mom, grandma and I were setting off on a roadtrip to California to spend the holidays with family. We had been on the interstate for nearly an hour when I looked out the back window and saw a semi truck approaching our car rather quickly. I didn’t say anything; I merely watched as the semi plowed into our small Chevy Malibu. I’ll spare you the details. We landed upside-down in the snow-filled median. My mom and grandma were put in the ambulance as soon as it arrived. The focus was on them because authorities thought I had been crushed to death in the backseat. So there I sat in the cold snow, glass and my personal belongings scattered around me, non-responsive and helpless. I would have been left there for longer, had it not been for a random man that had pulled over to help. He could hear me screaming when I finally came to and urged the first responders to tear into the backseat of the car.
I am thoroughly convinced that God was with that man on that day, as well as with me. Laying in the Webster County emergency room, I couldn’t stop thinking about what had happened and that God must not be finished with me yet, or I would still have been laying in the snow, possibly dead. It’s not an easy thing to think about, but it definitely is an eye-opener. Since then, I have made small, attainable goals that I know I can personally achieve. They are sometimes as simple as making sure to always respond, “You’re welcome” when someone says thank you. From that day (December 18, 2005–I will never forget that date), I have dedicated my lifework to making my faith known to others around me through my actions. It’s the simplest gift that us as Christians can give back to the world and, in turn, to God. I urge you to always be aware of what kind of image you are putting out to the world because you never know when or where you will encounter God in the world today.
Grace and love reign supreme.