Thursday, March 05, 2009

Do You Belive in Luck?

With St. Patrick's Day coming up, I can't help but think about luck. The whole St. Patrick's Day celebration seems to revolve around the idea of luck. The luck of the Irish, lucky four leaf clovers and a lucky pot of gold.

I wonder why when I meet a man who is gainfully employed, happily married, has delightful children and is financially stable I say, 'Boy are you lucky.'

Why is it that when someone goes on a mission that could have either a positive or negative outcome, I find myself saying, 'Good luck?'

And when I see man who has been fired from his job, who's wife is unhappy, whose children are always in trouble, who struggles financially, I think saying, 'My you've had some bad luck.' is helpful?

Just what is luck anyway?

The Merriam-Webster online Dictionary defines luck as:
1a: a force that brings good fortune or adversity
1b: the events or circumstances that operate for or against an individual
2: favoring chance

Hm... I interpret the dictionary's definition as:
1a: All powerful
1b: Life
2. Enjoying the unpredictable

By my definition of luck, I guess you could say, I do believe in luck. Here's why;
1a: God is all powerful. He has a plan for each of us. That plan brings us both good fortune and adversity.
1b: There are all types of events and circumstances in life that bring us joy, comfort love, pain, grief and unhappiness. But without life experiences, we'll never find peace or inner strength.
2. Favoring/enjoying the chance/unpredictable is easy if we have faith in God's plan.

Even so, the next time I'm tempted to say, 'Boy are you lucky.' I hope instead I say, 'The Lord has rewarded you justly.' The next time I'm tempted to say, 'Good luck.' I hope instead I say, 'The Lord is at your side.' The next time I'm tempted to say, 'My you've had some bad luck.' I hope I say, 'Let's pray.'

Irish Celtic Cross Pendant Necklace: Emerald Isle Blessings
Irish Celtic Cross Pendant Necklace: Emerald Isle Blessings

1 comment:

  1. My husband hates the term luck because he sees it as something in contrast to God's hand in things. I struggle not to use it for that reason...although I think that people can see luck and God's hand (providence) as one and the same.

    I also don't know how God works in this world. He certainly does, so any event could be Gods hand. And he certainly is in control of everthing in some sense. But I believe that God also gives us free will, which leaves room not only for choices we make which affect others, but for a little chaos, since unlike God we do not understand how the choices, both big and small, that we make, will affect our world. It's still chaous under God's control (so maybe not technically chaos)...but the question is, how tight is that control? So, the idea of luck is just all fraught with questions for me.