TITLE: A Symphony of Miracles Chapter 24 Fitting it all together 2/21/14
By Richard McCaw
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Fitting it all together
Come to think of it, how I started to take violin lessons still amazes me.
“Mummy, can I take violin lessons?” I asked my mother one day.
“I’d have to find out, dear!” she replied.
“It’s upstairs in the cottage,” I explained, “the other side of the Hicks’ house!”
Soon, I was climbing those stairs once every week with a violin she had bought for me. I spent an hour drawing a bow over its strings before Doris Livingston, an older woman who was a kind and gentle violin teacher.
I was twelve at the time and living with my mother and sister in a rented apartment on Conolley Avenue in Allman Town.
Now you may hear someone say, “Whatever happens to us is just a matter of luck!” Or you may hear this argument, “There’s no intelligent mind that oversees the running of the universe!” or this one, “Everything that happens to us is pure coincidence!”
Pure coincidence? Hah! Then, what I experienced from a little child may be perceived as very many coincidences. I call them miracles! Now listen to this.
My sister and I would visit the Hicks children, Jan, Eddie, and Lillian, who lived near the other end of the avenue. Mrs. Hicks, their mother, operated a piano studio in a separate cottage on the left of their residence. A green upstairs cottage stood on the right, near the back of the premises. That was where Miss Livingston taught. As children, we often played on the grassy lawn and around an old truck parked in the left of the front yard. I remember the large gray stone columns with their ornamental carvings and the fence that looked like giant green paper clips coming out of the low gray cement wall.
During our many visits to the Hicks, I developed a fancy for Jan, the oldest, whose beauty and innocence instinctively attracted me. She was a delicate rose that fitted into my youthful idea of ‘love.’
One day, I climbed up and held on to the dark, green wooden bars on the side of the truck. Jan was standing inside the truck, and since none of the other children were nearby, I whispered in her ears, “I love you!” That was a bold thing for a shy boy like me to say. Immediately, I fell to the ground below, as if I had fainted, completely embarrassed, and wished to disappear, like a soap-bubble into the air.
When I found out that Doris Livingston, a senior, was teaching violin lessons in the upstairs cottage, I suddenly sprouted an unusual interest in the violin.
Stand face to face with any evolutionist, they will point out to you that the theory of evolution is based upon the belief that a series of coincidences occurred at the dawn of the universe. “An explosion took place millions of years ago. As time went on, a series of coincidences followed that brought about a human being. But it took just the right coincidences to form the big toes on a man, or thumbs on his hands. Not to mention that man had to eat in order to live. Therefore other coincidences again took place, so that water that he needed to drink and various types of food to provide him with nutrition just happened to be around. When a man needed someone to share his life, a woman just happened to be formed to meet that need. When babies were born yet other coincidences had to take place. The baby needed a mother’s milk to survive, so the mother’s body just happened to have milk.” Of course, what a wonderful coincidence that the mother had these prepared bags of milk with just the right nutrients at just the right time!
When people say, “There is no God! Every event in our lives is merely a coincidence! You can’t prove that there is a God overseeing each incident in our lives! You would have to show Him to me!” we would have to gently reply, “You’re right! We can’t show God to anyone! But as in some court cases, a sufficient number of circumstantial evidences often point to the perpetrator of a crime, so also an accumulation of incidents in our lives can indicate to us that there is a Creator behind everything we see.”
In my own experience, surely I could have made trips up to Jan’s house without taking violin lessons as an excuse to visit her home. As further events took place, it became obvious to me that none of these incidents were mere coincidences. It seemed like a supernatural hand was directing each incident along a predetermined path, in order that a divine purpose in my life might be fulfilled, namely, that I should teach music and thus have time to minister the gospel in later years.
As I have learned since those early years, a man’s heart plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps. “There are many plans in a man’s heart, nevertheless the Lord’s counsel - that will stand.” “A man’s steps are of the LORD; how then can a man understand his own way?”3
When Jeremiah faced the rebellious nation of Israel that would not take heed to God’s warning of judgment against sin, He recognized God’ sovereignty in every situation, that the Lord is the Only One, Who must plan every detail of our lives. “O Lord,” he prayed, “I know the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man who walks to direct his own steps”
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