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Have you said “I can’t believe that was a coincidence” after a situation you’ve been in?

I know a lot of people think things just happen. It is difficult for me to believe that most things are simply a coincidence. I think they are meant to happen for a reason. God either performs a miracle or sends angels. I think we should be giving the credit to Him, not nature.

I would like to share two stories that illustrate my point.

The first story is about angels that God sent to help me. A few years ago Anita (my wife) and I were in Chicago attending a meeting. The night before the meeting, we decided to dine at one of our favorite restaurants—Nick’s Fishmarket. Truly a special place to dine. We could not wait to eat there. We valet parked our minivan and proceeded to roll down the red-carpeted entrance way to the restaurant. The incline was slightly downhill and the carpet appeared smooth with no bumps. Unfortunately, my wheelchair’s small front tires hit a covered-up bump, and I was immediately thrown out of my chair—to my surprise. Within a few seconds two large men appeared and placed me back in my chair. They said nothing and before I could thank them they were gone. I asked the valet attendant and the maitred’ where they went. They both said they did not see two large men that helped me. Anita and I were shocked: We knew they existed because they lifted me back into my wheelchair.

Was this event a coincidence or were these two men angels that God sent to help us? He knows it is very difficult for Anita and me to get me back into my wheelchair, not to mention the embarrassment that goes along with it. I broke my foot that night but God sent two angels to help us out in a very difficult situation.

Don’t you agree?

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The next situation is about both miracles and angels.

Approximately a year ago one of my best friends growing up in Kokomo, Indiana, was diagnosed with lymphoma. He and his wife kept all family and close friends involved by sending emails of updates on his condition. Unfortunately his cancer did not respond to chemotherapy and he passed away on December 14, 2014. I was shocked that he had died and I remember saying to myself I wish I could give his eulogy. However, I did not think it would be possible since he lived in Fort Myers, Florida. A few days later I received an email from his widow saying the memorial service would be held on January 3, 2015, in Fort Myers. We normally spend about ten days at our vacation home in Bradenton, Florida, after Christmas. We were planning on doing it this year also.

Is this a miracle? Even though he died on 12/14/14 his memorial service would be held on 1/3/15. I would be in Florida at that time and Fort Myers is only ninety miles from our home in Bradenton. I was given the opportunity to give his eulogy. It was so special to me, and I hope it was for those in attendance. Was the timing just a coincidence?

The next part of the same story is about two angels God sent me.

My wife, my sister and I were about fifteen miles from our home in Bradenton, returning from the memorial service, when we started experiencing severe shaking of my van. Unfortunately the right front tire went bad. We were on a very busy interstate highway and we pulled off as far as we could to the side. It was still a very dangerous situation with all the cars and trucks passing us at over 70 mph. We knew people have been killed in similar situations.

We called AAA and they said they would send somebody out to help us within an hour. Prior to AAA arriving, two people stopped to help. First were two men in a pickup truck. We saidhelp was on the way so they left. The next person that stopped was a Highway Safety Patrol person. We again said help was on the way; but we were hoping he would park his safety vehicle behind us with the emergency lights flashing to give us some protection. He left, however. It was now getting dark.

Sometime later another Highway Safety Patrol vehicle stopped. This person indicated more than once he was very concerned for our safety. He said he would remain behind us with his emergency lights flashing until our van was fixed.

Within the hour the person from AAA arrived. He attempted to change the tire but was unsuccessful because the van was too low and he could not get a jack under it. He stated the van would need to be towed to a tire dealership to change the tire. So he left but the safety official remained behind us.

AAA was called back and informed of the situation. They said they would send a tow truck. The only problem was what was going to happen to me. My sister and wife could ride in the tow truck to the tire dealership, but I would not be able to get into the truck, being paralyzed and in a wheelchair. The safety official could not believe what was happening so he called the Highway Patrol dispatcher for help. It was decided the Highway Patrol would come and assess the situation and, if needed, could arrange to have a handicap-accessible taxicab take me to the tire store.

Finally, AAA approved the plan after about two hours of conversation. However, the Highway Patrol had no idea when they could assess the situation since there had been an accident on the interstate that had resulted in a death.

The safety official insisted on remaining behind us with his emergency lights flashing. He was hoping he would not get into trouble since the maximum time they were permitted to be with any one vehicle was forty-five minutes. It had already been three hours.

Finally the tow truck arrived—still no state police or handicap-accessible taxi. I was preparing to roll out of the van and remain on the side of the highway in my wheelchair with the safety official. My wife and sister started to get into the tow truck. At that point the tow truck driver said “no way” was he going to let me be alongside the highway in a wheelchair. It was way too dangerous, especially at night. He told me to stay in the van and we all would wait for the Highway Patrol to show up.

At that point I saw the tow truck driver and the safety official talking. They came over to me and said they thought of a way to lift my van up and change my tire. That is what they did and within fifteen minutes we were on our way home.

I hope you can see that God sent two angels that night to help us—the safety official and the tow truck driver. Without these two angels I am not sure what would have happened. We all could have been killed that night.

So let me recap this very important story about miracles and angels:

  1. My friend died on 12/14/14. The memorial service was held on 1/3/15, the time that I was going to be in Florida.
  1. God protected my tires until after I had given the eulogy. We later discovered the rubber on the tire separated because of age and in fact the left front tire barely made it home.
  1. Several people stopped but were unwilling or unable to help except for the second safety official and the tow truck driver.

There is no way this all was just a coincidence!

So my friends, I hope you believe like I do that God performs miracles and provides angels when we are in need. There are no coincidences in life. There is a God who loves us and wants to protect us. He does this for all but only believers know miracles and angels are real!