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Friday, August 3, 2012

Pennies from Heaven!

Laughing with God….aka…..Pennies from Heaven!

Do you believe God has a sense of humor?  I do.  I have seen it lots of times in my life and ministry.  So I have had some pretty funny experiences, lately.  At least, I think the are funny.  Let me set the stage.  We moved in recent years to our new location because we felt God was leading us to do that so as to be available to assist my aging parents.   And we felt pretty confident that it was God leading……have seen multiple confirmations over the passing months.  Additionally, over the last year, I have taken to going on early morning walks, several miles, brisk pace, partly for the sake of the dog’s bladder,  and partly to get this old body of mine into some kind of physical condition.  (And no, they didn’t invite me to try out for the Olympics.)  The other tidbit that is important to the context is that in our Bible study group, we were reviewing the Exodus story, noting especially how God provided for His people during the tough wilderness times of their lives and journey.  Now, to the story:

As many folks are during this tough economic climate, we have to watch pennies pretty closely, and some months things get awfully tight.  I handle much of the financial work in our family, and so, when bills mount up, I especially feel it.  (That, and my wife probably has greater faith than I do in these matters……but that’s another story, too---see the book.)  Anyway, a couple of months ago was out walking the dog about 5:30 in morning, headed on my usual route, and talking with God as we walked.  Since bills were awaiting my return, money was on my mind, and so I was raising the idea that since we were here doing what we felt God had led, surely He would look after the financial aspect of things for us, too….but that I wished it would happen a bit more speedily or in ways other than I was experiencing.  And preferably it should happen before the due date of the bills!  The story of manna from heaven was fresh in my mind, if not actually part of the conversation with God. 

So walking along, just having finished that conversation with God, I happened to glance down to see a shiny nickel laying on the ground.   As I picked it up, I felt as if God was laughing with me and saying, “See, I could drop money to the ground in front of you just as I did the manna for the Israelites when they were going through their wilderness time.”  I laughed, but responded, “yeah, but it’s going to take more than just a few nickels for some of those bills!”  Walking further on…..about a mile or two down the road…….happened to glance down to see a dollar bill on the ground!  I really laughed as I picked it up.  I figure God was, too.  Although, I was also aware the bills needed more than a dollar bill, too.

Time passes, bills get paid one way or another, life goes on.  Another morning the other day.  Same route.  Same dog.  Another month of bills.  Same prayers.   But then, realizing that I wouldn’t have the usual amount of time, I changed my course a bit.  Know what happened?  Sure enough, found money on the ground again.  I took it to mean that God was reminding me He was still around, still aware, still able and willing to provide.  But this time, it was a five dollar bill!!  I laughed.  God probably guffawed at me……if that isn’t too unholy of a thing to do!  Better, I think, but still, not very many bills are only five dollars, are they?  But my little brain is running the numbers…..first a nickel, then a dollar which is twenty times greater, then a five dollar bill which is five times greater……maybe a 50 next, then, who knows?

A couple of days later, still dealing with the monthly bills, still chuckling about the five and God’s little jokes.  Out with the dogs again, but this time, had finished the walk with my wife’s dog, and had my older dog on her shorter route, over by the railroad tracks.  Happen to see a cosmetic case sort of thing laying on the ground….maybe a kid had been playing.  Started to go on, and then thought, maybe I better see what that is, since it was such an odd thing to be in such an odd place.  Pick it up and open it, see a social security card, and realize it is not a makeup case, but some lady’s wallet thingy (a clutch or some such thing).  Figure she must have dropped it, or it had gotten stolen.  Kind of glanced through it a bit to see if there was a driver’s license or something with an address, cause I assume she lives close by.  Don’t find it, just the social security card, the library card, a few credit cards, so decide not to dig too much, and just ran it by the police station later.  Figure they can get the address from the library or something if it isn’t somewhere else in the wallet. 

Are you ahead of me yet?  First a nickel, then a dollar, then a five……now, CREDIT CARDS!!!!   Isn’t God good?  Except I don’t think it was His name on the cards.  And, I took them by the police before I even THOUGHT of using them…..which I wouldn’t have anyway. 

So here’s the deal.  Remember Philippians 4:19…God supplying the needs, or Ephesians 3:20….God doing beyond our imaginations?  Well, I’m kind of figuring I need to keep my eyes open on the upcoming walks.  Expecting maybe some negotiable bearer bonds or T-bills or something.  I’ll let you know.  (Although, Publisher’s Clearing House does keep telling me that I am DEFINITELY in the running…..)

TL:dr   God can teach us important lessons in funny ways as he meets our needs. 

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