"For God so love the World . . ." (John 3:16a)
When I was a boy I used to love to find a
stray penny on the sidewalk. I would save them in a jar in my room and
then use them to buy candy or gum when I had found enough. Later as an
adult I read a story about how a minister still loved to find pennies on
the sidewalk because on each one was written the words: "In God we
trust." He said that each penny was a message from Heaven that reminded
him of just how much God loved him.
Today I was headed to the store to buy a week’s worth of groceries for my family. I didn’t really feel up to it, though. My stomach was nauseous and I felt weak. I wondered if I was coming down with a virus. Still, our cupboards were bare and it couldn’t be put off. I stopped first to fill my car with gas before heading to the store. As I walked in to pay I saw a dime laying on the asphalt. I picked it up and remembered the minister’s story. I felt blessed 10 times over.
I read the words, "In God we trust" written on it and realized that sick or not God loved me and as with me today and always.
Later as I was heading into the store I saw a local club doing a Christmas fund drive to buy toys for the needy children in our area. I pulled out a few dollars and handed them to the people.
They thanked me and wished me a "Merry Christmas" as I turned to go into the store. Then I
saw it. A second dime laying right in front of the door. This time I felt so good that my stomach stopped feeling queasy. I pocketed the dime, looked to the sky, and smiled.
I took my time shopping since I was still feeling a little weak. Finally before heading home I stopped to pick up a take out pizza for dinner. I didn’t really feel up to cooking. When I got my change I dropped it along with my first two dimes into the charity box on the counter. I enjoyed the idea of passing them and the love that went with them on to others. I walked out with a happy heart. I took one step toward my car and saw a third dime gleaming in the sunshine on the sidewalk. I laughed with delight. I knew that Heaven was watching over me and God was encouraging me to keep loving, caring, and sharing all that I could in this life. I felt loved not 30 times over, but 30,000 times over. When I got home too every bit of sickness and weakness had disappeared from my body. I felt healthy, alive and full of joy.
As you go through this life with all of its struggles, sickness, and problems know that you are loved. You are loved with a love more powerful than you can ever imagine. You are loved by God, Our Heavenly Father, the creator of us all! And the proof of it is all around you. It is in every sunrise and every flower. It is in every smile you see and every hug you get. It is in every good thing, miraculous message, or curious coincidence that happens upon you in this life. It is even in every penny or dime you find on the ground. Rejoice in that love, cherish it, welcome it into your heart and soul, and make your whole life a celebration and sharing of it.
By Joe Mazzella