It’s a simple concept – everything happens for a reason – but it’s rather difficult to grasp or really believe in. Who in their right mind could? If someone knows the reasons why we have famines, hurricanes, and genocides, please let me know. Then again, just because something happens for a reason, doesn’t mean that we will ever know that reason. Believing in something doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to be able to prove it, or understand it.
I argue that the best way to come to the conclusion that everything happens for a reason is to find a small, seemingly unimportant circumstance where this happens. It can be too much for us to look at the big problems in the world and try to figure them out. Instead, look at small, relatively insignificant situations, and draw parallels.
This happened to me today. I had the day off, and I had a few errands I needed to run. I had to visit the bank, drop some mail off at the post office, buy a bunch of overpriced organic food, and visit a record store. All of these tasks went as planned, except one. The record store. Turns out they’re closed on Saturdays. Kind of weird, if you ask me. I understand being open limited hours on Saturday, or being closed on Sunday, but really? Closed on the day that I have off? Who planned that?
So, I go to the front doors of the record store, realized they were closed, and decided to visit a used book store that carries CDs and records. After driving a half hour in the opposite direction I finally arrived. Whenever I go to this store I always do a quick look through my favorite areas – politics, and economics – to see if anything jumps out at me. I’m still searching for a Walter E Williams book that no store in the Milwaukee area seems to carry. I could buy it online, but that’s not as fun.
While I was searching I found a couple of Thomas Sowell books. Unfortunately, they were two that I’d already read, and actually own. But, being the goof I am, I bought them anyways. I like to pick out gifts in advance for unknown recipients. Someday I will make someone very happy when I present them with their own copy of Basic Economics or Applied Economics. (Oh, and I found a Thelonious Monk record too – “Thelonious Alone in San Francisco”.)
I never would have found those books, and never would have been able to give them away, if the first record store had been open. At first glance, the store being closed was an inconvenience. But later in the day I realized that it actually lead me to a store where I found something else. It’s pretty petty stuff, I know. But try to apply that kind of thinking to everything in your life. Everything happens for a reason, if you believe it does.