Ser*en*dip*i*tea \ˌser-ən-ˈdi-pə-tē\ n. The faculty of discovering desirable or valuable things accidentally or unexpectedly while sipping high quality Darjeeling for the first time.
The sun glistened on the damp pavement as I walked into Antique Sandwich Co. the establishment of my employment at the time. Sunshine lit the walls of the restaurant making for a happy work environment (Sunshine in the Puget Sound in its self is serendipitous.) Adding to my already good mood was the fact that I arrived early enough before my shift that I had time to enjoy a cup or two of tea. The An. San., as it was called by the regulars, pandered to tea snobs. The owners served about a dozen varieties of high quality loose leaf tea.
When patrons ordered hot tea they were served a full pot, not in a plain, white stock style pot either. A beautiful antique porcelain tea pot was delivered to the table. So I chose a pretty pot and set the water to boiling. Now to the counter where the glass canisters sat neatly in a row displaying all the options of tea. Lovely shades of varying browns and greens shone through the canisters. So many choices! I began to lift the lids one at a time inhaling deeply as I went. My nose danced on the variety of fragrances until I picked up the lid to smell good Darjeeling for the very first time. At the moment I inhaled serendipity twirled my senses, lifting me high into past olfactory memories. My mind traveled to the southern California sunshine of my youth, in the branches of my grandma’s apricot tree when the fruit was ripe. YUM! Eureka, Darjeeling it would be! So began my life as a tea snob.
My discovery of Darjeeling, as serendipitous as it was, cannot begin to compare with the Holy Spirit’s serendipity of unwrapping the treasure and delights of God in the Bible. “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we could ask or think…” Ephesians 3:20. He is not only able to answer our prayers but He can do it in a way that exceeds our expectations. As I write, this refrain sings in my heart, “How wonderful, how marvelous and my song shall ever be. How wonderful, how marvelous is my Savior's love for me!”
I remember the wonder of the answer to a prayer early in my walk with Christ. I was between paychecks, and as often happens in life, I reached the end of my money before the end of the month. Desperate for clean clothes to go to work in, I cried out, “Lord, I really need some laundry money.” Two steps later I noticed a quarter on the ground, exactly the amount I needed to complete the sum to do one load! Serendipity! A delightful unexpected treasure! I burst into praise as I picked up the gift from my new found Father. Struck with the reality He really does listen to my prayers. He really does care for me!
My discoveries of the serendipitous nature of God have been many through the years. His beauty and creativity displayed in the most unexpected ways never cease to amaze me. I remember reading how He sealed the deal with Noah by placing a rainbow in the sky. Only God can sign His name like that!
Think of all the marvelous discoveries of Jesus in the New Testament that reveal the mysteries of Messiah in the Old. One of my favorite is the first of only two references to Melchezidek in the Old Testament. Hebrews declares Jesus is the High Priest of this heavenly order. When we first meet Melchezedik , he brings bread and wine to bless Abram. Can you see our high priest, Jesus, blessing his disciples on the night he was betrayed? Like God’s original priest of old he breaks bread, serves wine, and blesses them. Mystery revealed! Serendipity!
How has He inspired awe and wonder in you? When has He stepped into your life with serendipity? How can we provide serendipity to others, maybe sending a hand written note or an unexpected gift simply to add pleasure to an ordinary day?
Father, You are the personification of serendipity! You never cease to surprise us with the riches of Your glory. Thank You for being You! Please, open our eyes in wonder to the Wonder that You are. Amen
FYI, I worked @ An. San. Co. for a few short months in 1980. It is still in operation by it's original owners. So if you're ever in Tacoma, WA check it out! They make the best cheese cake on the planet! http://antiquesandwichcompany.com/