Is Synchronicity One of God's Ways To Guide Us?

Christ the Redeemer, Brazil, Struck by Lightning

I began writing on synchronicity a few weeks ago but then put it aside because I was not sure if this was a topic I should write on. Then some acta of synchronicity began to unfold that eventually gave me the confirmation. Before I explain why let us look at the meaning of synchronicity. The word was coined by Dr. Carl Jung, the Swiss psychologist, in 1930 to describe the event of a meaningful coincidence which seems to defy probability and “normal” explanations. Jung believed that synchronicities carry messages the way dreams do and mirror deep psychological processes. They provide guidance to the degree that they correspond to emotional states and inner experiences.

Jung had a belief in God but more the New Age Gnostic view. Christians tend to understand that evil is the absence of good, whereas Jung believed that an adequate god image must include evil to balance the good and that God was both evil and good. He also believed that God does not exist independent of the psyches of human beings and  Jesus Christ was unquestionably a man and therefore a fallible figure. In line with the Gnostic view on Christ, he believed Christ is the symbolic representation of the most central archetype, the self. Thus the sublime goodness of Christ, from his point of view, is not whole until he unites with the dark side, the Anti-Christ. And, Jesus did not die for our sins, but for God the Father! The angry Yahweh of the Old Testament was full of guilt and in need of atonement. Jesus died to expiate the sins of God the Father.

I did discover that Jung developed his ideas on synchronicity partly from conversations with Albert Einstein. Wolfgang Pauli, another father of quantum mechanics, convinced him to share his ideas. Synchronicity and the physical phenomenon of entanglement, whereby physical particles at vast distances from each other have been found to interact instantaneously, have some features in common.

Here is a definition of synchronicity today: the simultaneous occurrence of events that appear significantly related but have no discernible causal connection. Synchronicity as Jung understands it may have connections to religion and God but not necessarily the Christian God.

If the power is within you and the unconscious how is the Supreme God involved in these significant occurrences beyond chance in one's life? For a New Ager, it is no problem having the collective unconscious ruling these coincidences but from the perspective of most Christians, these random chance occurrences have God at the helm. Thus, synchronicity does have several spiritual connotations.

Returning to my putting aside this article for weeks it appeared to me that certain synchronicities needed to unfold in my life first. Not that I hadn't already experienced many synchronicities in my life already but as a confirmation that this direction I was heading was right. We might not think that what we do in our life on a small scale has any significance to God but on the contrary, I believe that it is precisely the small things that matter the most.

In one near-death experience life review I read, this person had a life review as most near-death experiencers have. What stood out in his review were the small seemingly almost insignificant acts he had done. One was as a boy he brought some water to a tree. It was just one of those random acts of kindness that was not even extended to humans, but to nature. This brought to my mind that everything we think, do or say is important. Grant you, not a lot we think or do might be righteous acts or thoughts. We are here to grow and learn in being imagers of God. God is the example of perfect love and we are here to grow in that love.

So what does meeting someone we hadn't seen or spoken to for a long time and suddenly thinking of them and then they call us have to do with righteous acts or thoughts and perfecting ourselves in love? Synchronicities bring to mind what is often connected to God in the Bible: signs. You can read many verses where God gives signs, miracles, and wonders for those who have eyes to see and ears to hear.

And the LORD said unto Moses, How long will this people provoke me? and how long will it be ere they believe me, for all the signs which I have shewed among them? (Numbers 14:11)

And the LORD shewed signs and wonders, great and sore, upon Egypt, upon Pharaoh, and upon all his household, before our eyes: (Deuteronomy 6:22 )

And let it be, when these signs are come unto thee, that thou do as occasion serve thee; for God is with thee. (1 Samuel 10:7)

Synchronicities in Numbers

In the weeks past, I began seeing the numbers on the clock hitting ones frequently. 11:11, 10:01, etc. Ones have been frequent for me for decades but not so much in the last year. To see them again meant to me something had changed. It was a sign that only I can understand with the help of the Holy Spirit. Then I remembered that I had a snapshot of one of these 11:11 pictures. When I went to get my hard drive to find the snapshot I remembered taking, I looked at the clock next to my desk and lo and behold the digital clock read 11:11. Then, not only did I find one snapshot but I found two. The above picture I took of my desktop in 2015. When I looked at my computer it was May 11 at 11:11 a.m. and so I snapped a shot of it. The below picture of my desktop was taken five years later, incredibly again, on May 11 but in the year 2020 at 11:11 a.m.!

Synchronicities in Relationships
After I put this article aside one day I spoke to my daughter's father-in-law at my garden on an adjoining property to my house. He often stops by if he sees my vehicle outside the garden. That was not unusual. What was unusual was I thought as we were talking and he was semi-complaining about the frequent visitors to his house keeping him from chores, that he never comes to my house. Later that afternoon my daughter dropped by my house and after talking awhile I brought up out of the blue what her father-in-law said to me about frequent visitors to his house. Thirty seconds later we both hear an ATV that appeared to be coming closer to my house and up my driveway making us question if it was her husband who had come home early from work. ATVs are the main mode of transportation in my country environment. But no, it was her father-in-law! He was looking for a missing ladder which was highly unlikely to be at my house but my daughter just happened to be here and knew where it was - tucked behind the new hay bales they had put in the barn a month ago.

Thinking of "never coming to my house" and then he does (seemingly it has been years) and bringing up his words in our earlier conversation thirty seconds before we hear his ATV, and coming at the right time where he would get an answer to his question was synchronicity. Spiritual? It is not uncommon for someone to think of someone and then run into them or receive a phone call. It does mean that our thoughts do connect. Not with everyone but with those we feel adjoined to or comfortable with.

I have several times lifted the phone to call one of my children when they simultaneously are dialing me or we even connect without hearing any ringing on the line. It is oneness. Seeing oneness with our children is not so hard. Connecting with others I frequently see seems a spiritual message to me. Many who share their near-death experiences come back and share how they saw how all of humanity are really one, as we are all children of God. What we think, do, and say all have ramifications to other human beings like ripples on a pond going out from a rock dropped in it. I am comfortable with my daughter's father-in-law. He is a kind man with a good heart and I even told him so in our morning conversation after telling him not to work so hard. No doubt for me, to see that we have a connection that goes beyond our few years of knowing one another likely caused my thoughts to affect his thoughts and vice versa from our earlier conversation together.

Synchronicity in Coincidences and Serendipity
The other synchronicity that encouraged me that I should share this article I had started was just a few days before my book club membership trial period was ending and I was taking my last opportunity to find any good books of interest to read. The club recommended a few books that I might be interested in and several caught my eye on miracles doctors witnessed and shared during their years of practice. One book devoted the first few chapters on serendipity which is the fortunate good luck of having things come together just at the right moment—and in these stories it saved lives. Rather than calling it synchronicity the doctors attributed it to good fortune and labeled them "serendipitous events".

One story I will summarize and share was for me clearly spiritual synchronicity. It appeared one man was destined to have a heart attack and die but God had plans for him to live. God does not control our lives in what we eat, do, and don't do to live a healthy life. We have free will to choose how we will take care of ourselves and sometimes we inherit genes that set the course for us to get sick if we don't take the precaution to prevent it. Sometimes we have no idea of what genes we may have that predestine us to ill health unless a parent or relative dies early in our lives and brings us a hint of what might befall us as well. God gave us free will to choose many of these choices in our lives but He controls our birth and death and much more if we follow the signs He gives us. I do believe angels may contribute to giving us those signs. At times it could be the Holy Spirit or Christ or God the Father. What matters is that we pay attention and trust in God's direction, even if we did not appear to ask for it. Many times we are asking God for help with our hearts but our minds aren't paying attention by contributing through direct prayer. Yet God still hears the many ways we ask for intercession.

In this story, the staff was ready to call it a day in the "cath lab" and intensive care unit for heart patients and were just closing up. The doctor had a few more checks to do before he could go home. As the doctor reached the elevator to go up to see another patient when it reached his floor and the door opened a man rolled out the door in front of him. He was unconscious. It turned out he was recognized as the local priest who often came to bring spiritual support to others in the hospital.

His heart had stopped and CPR was started immediately, and they kept up the CPR as they quickly carried him to the cath lab. All the lab assistants and nurses that were still in the hospital were called back. They did a catheterization procedure where they saw the blocked artery and opened it up, then shocked his heart back into action and stabilized his blood pressure. The type of heart attack he had involved the main artery and was called the “widowmaker”. No one knew how long he was in the elevator but his arrival to the right floor where cardiac emergency was handled, as well as falling at the feet of the cardiologist with the team still in the hospital, prevented his death. If it happened even just outside of the hospital he would not have made it. He recovered well and was back at the pulpit in four weeks expressing his gratitude to God and to the congregation for their prayers and the many who came to pray in the waiting room that night.

Their were several more stories in this book under the heading of serendipity events with even more amazing far-reaching coincidences which in one case saved a young star basketball player from dying on the basketball court with an unknown inherited heart condition. He went to Haiti with his cardiologist father to bring medical aid to the Haitians and the doctor volunteered his son to be the first to get tested on a recently repaired EKG machine some young teens had fixed that was donated to the team. The cardiologist wasn't supposed to be there in Haiti. He had gone to the wrong basketball game his son was playing in and met someone who was volunteering medical aid in Haiti and got him interested in going himself. His son was invited as well. The donated EKG machine had previously gone to Haiti but did not work and so it came back to the U.S. where it was repaired unexpectedly by these teens who had never worked on an EKG machine before. Thus it just happened to be delivered the second time on the same trip the doctor and his son went on.

Unbelievably, they found while testing the EKG machine and using his son for the test that he had a major life-threatening heart defect. The odds of missing his son's game, unexpectedly volunteering to help in Haiti, and also unexpectedly bringing his son and having him be the guinea pig instead of the other teen who came with them was seemingly "good luck". Yet, like the priest story above, God's hand was in the arrangements to help them discover the defect and prevent his death on the basketball court which would most likely have happened there. He had heart surgery and went on to be a star player in the years to come.

Jung wanted to bring together science and religion and never gave up the quest to do so his entire life but he leaned to supporting science over religion and thus science over God. He had many years of adventures in psychism. At medical school, he developed an interest in Spiritualism. His doctoral thesis was a study of a young medium, a cousin of his, who in her trances claimed that she was possessed by the personality of a much older man. He even did some automatic writing after seeing a crowd of ghosts enter his house.

Jung was also visited by a spirit guide he was in contact with tell him he was a "pagan who brought with him an Egypto-Hellenistic atmosphere with a Gnostic coloration." This spirit guide described himself as "an old man with the horns of a bull. I was walking up and down the garden with him and to me he was what the Indians call a Guru." Jung also became acquainted with another spirit guide named Ka. Over time he had obtained a whole series of messages from spirit guides which were to determine the nature of his beliefs. 

Rather than endear me to Jung having profound ideas about mankind and God I rather lean to seeing him as having grand ideas about consciousness, especially the collective unconscious, that could have come from the psychic realm not only leading him astray but all his followers since. While he saw synchronistic events in his practice and personal life he might not be the best one to give us an understanding of where and how these events come into an individual's life.

Christians have been taught, as we understand it from Scripture, that God is the Creator of the universe and that He interacts with that creation, providing a common cause for all possible events. In other words, God is capable of causing whatever normal or abnormal coincidences we experience. Thus, when we experience synchronicity, God may be leading us to see something. Yet we have to have our eyes and ears open to God whereby He might lead us to life away from death and accidents or other unfortunate events.

The Synchronistic Bringing Together of Relationships
Does God control who we marry and where we live? That is a question only God can answer but I do believe that along with God, we choose our future life and what lessons we may have as well as who we will meet, and yes, who we will marry. This can play a large part in bringing about synchronistic events. For example, six years ago we were looking for a place to move to. We must have researched in a dozen states for almost six months. Nothing was panning out. My daughter and I decided to take a trip to visit her brother and my son and take a side trip to look at two houses. The first house we looked at we decided to take a route that took us through the industrial part of town. We were given the impression that the town was awful and we would never live there in a million years. As it turned out later we moved to our house which is an hour north and after visiting the town many times since I really like it! We saw the worst that first visit and I believe we were meant to so we would not look further in that town!

The next place we looked at we both really loved. We did not go through a realtor. We just decided to drive by. For this house, there was a gate at the end of a long driveway so we had to park on the road and walk to the house to see it. We were not sure if it was vacant or not. So we carefully walked up and so no one was home and walked around the property as quickly as we could because we were trespassing. We did not even get to see in the house but something about the place we really liked even though there were definite signs of disrepair in some of the outbuildings.

When we got home we immediately found out the house had an offer on it. So we dropped that house and for another four months pursued our search. Then one day I get the inner prompting to look up that house on the internet and I discovered that the sale had not gone through and the house had just returned on the market. I immediately called a realtor and she agreed to go in the house, take pictures and send them to us. We immediately put in an offer without seeing inside the house, only viewing the pictures, and it got accepted.

After we moved in my daughter ended up marrying the "boy next door". His property literally bordered ours. My house sold in five days with multiple offers and both sales went through without a hitch. Still, another sign that we were supposed to buy and live in this house occurred. A couple of months after we moved in I was walking down the long driveway when I saw a necklace on the ground. It was mine! The day we had quickly walked up the driveway to see the house my necklace fell off my neck although I did not know it. The chain was intact. It had somehow slipped off my head. Not all the moving in, cars and realtor visits, moving trucks, etc. had crushed that stone on the necklace. I believe it was meant to be that I had left something precious to me on that property and a sign that it would be later returned to me.

Most of us have had strange coincidences happen in our lives that can't be explained. Some suggest it is destiny or a hidden pattern at work. Some believe that when synchronicity appears frequently in your life it is an indication you’re in the flow, where you should be, and that you’re in tune with the universe. This does not mean that all unfortunate events that may happen could be prevented by listening and paying attention to synchronous signs. Some accidents and unexpected loss of lives must unfold because of previous choices one has made.  Scripture is clear that God allows us to make mistakes and reap the consequences of those mistakes. Yet, by the number of near-death experiences people have been having and sharing over these last decades, their illnesses or accidents were not in their divine plan and God's will because they came back to life. By the hundreds, they share in their stories that God or some of God's council told them "It is not your time. You must go back and finish your mission." Maybe if some of these people had paid attention to the synchronistic signs they would not have had to die and then return to back to earthly life! Still, only a sovereign God could bring good out of our mistakes. God promises that He will make “all things work together for the good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). 

Many come back from their near-death to share the glory of God to others and this is an example of how God may use their mistakes and sins to bring good to others who may be burdened by the fear of dying or have trouble believing in heaven. Only God knows the whys and wherefores in whether some or all of these near-death experiences were meant to happen. I have read many stories of people not getting on airplanes (or other transportation) because they received some inner sense that they should not, only to find out later that the plane crashed or some accident happened. My boss and I were flying to a computer show and waiting for our connecting flight in a small town when suddenly we realized that most of the people around us were gone. We had been talking but not so absorbed that we could not hear the boarding call. Yet we did miss it. We had to catch the next plane out. Later we discovered that the airplane had engine trouble and had to return and then the passengers were bused to their destination, not flown on another plane!

Although I don't see these examples fit under the description of synchronicity, I do see them as acts of God where we might receive the intuition that something is not right as in the example of not boarding a plane that later crashed. My boss and I both belonged to the same church and were very studious with our prayers. So in our case, praying probably brought us a more fortunate trip than what we otherwise might have had.

The Bible tells us that God knows every hair on our head (Matt. 10:30) and that God’s purposes will prevail and that He is in control of even the most random event, “The human mind may devise many plans, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will be established" (Proverbs 19:21). Jesus said that not even a sparrow falls to the ground without the knowledge and consent of our Father God. (Matthew 10:29). No act, deed or thought is unknown by the Father. If that is our truth then the administration of the universe is not based on serendipity.

So whether we call it synchronicity, serendipity, intuition or good fortune, God and His angels are always with us and do guide us and even use our mistakes for good and to bring about God's will. If you believe in the existence of a higher power of being, then synchronicities are easy to make sense of and interpret as answers and directions to your prayers and wishes. Even if you lack such beliefs, synchronicities play a role in helping you find your purpose once you become aware of them. Faith in whatever direction we are led is necessary as long as we are prayerful in all we think and do. That does not mean we have to constantly pray. It means that our hearts are open to God's will and direction and we consciously keep attuned to His will active in our lives and we attempt to keep our thoughts positive. The more we open our hearts and minds to reflect on God, His glory and magnificent, pray to Him, and frequently send our gratitude to Him and ask for direction and help, the more likely we will receive these signs and God guidance to keep moving forward in life in alignment with God's will.