A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Just My Luck?

Posted on: February 4, 2013

fingers crossed

Keeping your fingers crossed

rosary in hand

Praying to God

I think there are three basic approaches to life.

The first is to believe that your future depends on “the universe” or on your luck, good or bad. You carry a good-luck charm to help you win the big game or consult your horoscope to find out what the day will hold. But how comforting is it to think that forgetting to bring your good-luck charm or follow your horoscope to the letter could hurt you?

The second is to believe that you’re in complete control of your future. You have a long-term plan and, if you follow it carefully, everything will fall into place. But as a poet named Robert Burns pointed out, the best-laid plans often fail to work out.

The first two approaches have a lot of supporters. We know that minor hiccups (traffic jams, rain on the day of a picnic, a stain on our favourite shirt) and major disruptions (job loss, serious illness, loss of loved ones) happen to us and those we love, and often with little warning. And so we long for life to unfold exactly according to our hopes and plans.

Notice that I said our plans. But this is where the third approach comes in. To take this approach is to “let go and let God” and believe that God is in control.

I think it’s a path worth following. Consider the alternative: if we make a decision or guide our children in their decision to marry a certain person or pursue a given career without praying for guidance first, we might miss out on the spouse or the career God has planned for us…or lead our children to do the same.

Recognizing that God is in control—and we’re not—might seem scary. But we can take comfort in the fact that God has good plans for each of us, as he tells us in Jeremiah 29:11:

For I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. (Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition)


2 Responses to "Just My Luck?"

or “Evan Almighty,” either way

As God, played by Morgan Freeman, started laughing in “God Almighty” when “Evan” started protesting because he had all of these plans!

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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