I recently came across a post that shed some light on something puzzling that has occured to me and also to friends from time to time:
FOR some time now, I have spoken with the occasional reader who is befuddled as to why they are suddenly seeing the number 11:11 or 1:11, or 3:33, 4:44, etc. Whether glancing at a clock, a cellphone, television, page number, etc. they are suddenly seeing this number “everywhere.” For instance, they won’t look at the clock all day, but suddenly feel the urge to look up, and there it is again.
Is it just coincidence? Is there a “sign” involved? My first reaction was that it is just coincidence, that it is what it is, and that there is a even a danger to attempt to read something into numbers (ie. numerology). But then… I started to see this everywhere myself, sometimes 3-4 times a day. And so recently, I asked the Lord if this has any meaning. Immediately the “scales of justice” came into my mind’s eye with the understanding that 11:11 shows a balance, so to speak, of mercy vs. justice, but 1:11 shows a “tipping” of the scale, as does any triple number such as 3:33.
Tipping in what direction…?
Having had this happen to me from time to time, and being unable to discern any particular significance, I simply filed it in the ‘unknown’ basket. Having googled it and read a few less-than-helpful sites, I was well aware of the danger of numerology. At the same time, I was also aware of the ‘red car’ syndrome, by which I mean that should you take ownership of a red car, it becomes amazing as to how many red cars there are on the road.
I still don’t know for sure what to make of it. However, I did resonate with Mark’s post above, in particular with the description of the scales balancing mercy and justice. I received the impression of the world being actively weighed on God’s scales.
The other thing that came to mind was Amos’s plubline:
This is what he showed me: behold, the Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand. 8 And the Lord said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said, “Behold, I am setting a plumb line in the midst of my people Israel; I will never again pass by them;” Amos 9 v7-8 ESV
From Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary
7:1-9 God bears long, but he will not bear always with a provoking people. The remembrance of the mercies we formerly received, like the produce of the earth of the former growth, should make us submissive to the will of God, when we meet with disappointments in the latter growth. The Lord has many ways of humbling a sinful nation. Whatever trouble we are under, we should be most earnest with God for the forgiveness of sin. Sin will soon make a great people small. What will become of Israel, if the hand that should raise him be stretched out against him? See the power of prayer. See what a blessing praying people are to a land. See how ready, how swift God is to show mercy; how he waits to be gracious. Israel was a wall, a strong wall, which God himself reared as a defence to his sanctuary. The Lord now seems to stand upon this wall. He measures it; it appears to be a bowing, bulging wall. Thus God would bring the people of Israel to the trial, would discover their wickedness; and the time will come, when those who have been spared often, shall be spared no longer. But the Lord still calls Israel his people. The repeated prayer and success of the prophet should lead us to seek the Saviour.
It shouldn’t be any surprise that we are – as individuals, communities, and nations, being actively weighed in the balance. In a sense, it has always been thus, but this may be a particular Kairos moment.
Kyrie Eleison, Christi Eleison.