Jun 19, 2010

Some Random Thoughts…

1 in 500,000. That’s the odds of being struck by lightning in any given year. The odds of winning the Arizona $10,000 Power Ball lottery? 1 in 723,144. So consider this: You have a greater chance of being struck by lightning than you do in winning one of the large Power Ball lottery. It makes one stop and think.


Now I don’t play the lottery. Maybe it’s because of all those statistics classes I took in college. I know that a 1 in 500,000 chance is practically negligible. But I also feel a bit uneasy. I don’t like to tempt God. To me, it seems a little vacuous to pray for God to protect me from the 1 in 500,000 chance of being struck by lightning but then turn around and ask His help to win the 1 in 723,144 Power Ball.


Of course, I may have to change my position. I recently read about a woman in Ocala, Florida who won the lottery. At least she thought she won the lottery. She purchased one of those “scratch” tickets. When she scratched the ticket, it said that she won $500,000. But when she went to redeem the ticket she was told that the ticket had been a misprint.


Hmm. So what’s to say if I purchased a ticket and I didn’t win the lottery that that wasn’t a misprint? Couldn’t I go to the Florida Lottery Board and show them my losing ticket and say that it really was the winning ticket? It was just printed wrong?


Lotteries aren’t necessarily bad. In fact, we read in Jonah Chapter 1 that the sailors used a lottery to figure out who caused the storm. In Acts, the Disciples used a lottery system to replace Judas. With God, nothing is left to chance. So while a lottery is random to us, it isn’t to God.


But there is one thing that we never have to leave to chance. It’s that when we have faith in Jesus, we can be 100% certain that our slate has been wiped clean. As Paul wrote in Romans 8:28-30, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” There’s nothing random in that promise.




Pastor David Hook



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