Personally, I loathe that phrase, whether out of the mouths of conventionally religious, out of the mouths of New Ages, or out of the orifices of 12-steppers, for two reasons.
One is that it doesn't comport with modern scientific knowledge; the uncertainties of quantum theory show that, at a microscopic level, exact causation cannot be limned out. Related to that, things like chaos theory, emergent complexity, etc., show that exact results of causal events cannot be predicted even at the macroscopic level.
Two, as shown here in detail, it's got a huge, gross, boatload of insensitivity behind it.
This also illustrates why the Silver Rule is better than the Golden Rule.
"Do NOT do unto others what you do NOT want them to do to you."
I've written about the Silver Rule before, most recently with Kim Davis. Before that, with explaining its practical consequential differences, as part of attacking the so-called War on Christmas myth.
This has some extra significance with the HERO proposition losing by a fair margin in Houston Tuesday.
A lot of conservative Christians probably haven't even heard of the Silver Rule. Those who have would surely belittle it as non-Christian.
Beyond the Silver Rule, shit happened plenty in Houston on bigotry, and on the state of Texas in general in kissing the Legislature's ass, last week. And, noooo, there was no divine plan behind it; there was no "reason" except the lack of reason of a majority of a small minority of eligible voters who actually turned out. And, if my guesstimates are right, more shit will happen to Houston in times ahead.
And, beyond that, from personal experience in the newspaper biz, I know that shit happens all the time. Fatal car wrecks had no god or higher power behind them, for example.
Nor does a small town murder-suicide on the stereotypical "slowest day of the news year."
And, certainly, on the slowest day of the news year, no god had a purpose orchestrated behind a wingnut anti-abortion zealot killing a police officer and two others.