PENNIES FROM HEAVEN
I don’t know if you are like my wife or me, but whenever we’re walking through a parking lot and spot a penny on the ground, no matter how dirty or mangled it is we pick it up. I keep them, along with nickels and dimes, in a big jar in the closet. So when I read this story, it gave me a new appreciation for those simply pennies. The lady who wrote the story did not give her name. Here’s what she wrote:
A few months ago, my husband and I were invited to spend the weekend at his employer’s home. I was nervous about the weekend. The boss was very wealthy, with a fine home on the waterway, and cars costing more than our house. The first day and evening went well, and I was delighted to have this rare glimpse into how the very wealthy live.
My husband’s employer was quite generous as a host and took us to the finest restaurants. I knew I would never have the opportunity to indulge in this kind of extravagance again, so I was enjoying myself. As the three of us were about to enter an exclusive restaurant one evening, his boss was walking slightly ahead of us. He stopped suddenly and looked down on the pavement for a long, silent moment. I wondered if he wanted us to go ahead of him into the restaurant. There was nothing on the ground except a single darkened penny that someone had dropped.
Silently, my husband’s boss reached down and picked up the penny. He held it up and smiled, then put it in his pocket as if he had found a great treasure. How absurd, I thought! What need did this man have for an old, beat-up penny? Why would he even take the time to stop and pick it up? Throughout the dinner, that entire scene nagged at me. Finally, I could stand it no longer. I casually mentioned that my daughter once had a coin collection and asked if the penny he had found had been of some value.
A smile crept across the man’s face as he reached into his pocket for the penny and held it out for us to see. I had seen many pennies before! What was the point of this?
“Look at it,” he said. “Read what it says.” I read the words, “United States of America.”
“Keep reading,” he urged. So I read, “One cent.”
“That’s right,” he remarked. “Read further,” he encouraged me. “In God we Trust” I read.
“Yes!” he exclaimed. I looked at him somewhat puzzled and shook my head as if to say, “Is there something else?”
With a slight smile, yet a look of sincerity he said: “If I trust in God, the name of God is holy to me, even on an old coin. Whenever I find a coin, I look at that inscription. It is written on every single United States coin, but we never seem to notice it! God drops a message right in front of me telling me to trust Him? Who am I to pass it by? When I see a coin, I pray. I stop to see if my trust is in God at that moment. I pick up the coin as a response to God that I do trust in Him. For a short time, at least, I cherish it as if it were gold. I think it is God’s way of starting a conversation with me. Lucky for me, God is patient, and pennies are plentiful!”
After my husband and I had returned home, I went out shopping the next day. As I was walking toward one store, I noticed a penny on the sidewalk. I did something I would have never done before. I stopped and picked it up and realized that I had been worrying and fretting in my mind about things I can not change. I read the words, “In God We Trust,” and had to laugh. Yes, God, I get the message. It seems that I have been finding an inordinate number of pennies in the last few months, but then, pennies are plentiful! And God is patient. – Dr. Robert R Seyda