Saturday, April 13, 2019

More Precious Than Gold (Or a Debit Card)

An unprecedented number of children
attending an 8:30 am Children's Church Worship Service
found me racing through a store on Easter Sunday.

What a glorious morning!

As I maneuvered my way through the aisles,
I almost couldn't contain
the joy I felt inside.
Now, with the 11:00 am worship service
only an hour away,
I hurried to the garden section.

I had ordered what I thought
would be more than enough flower pots
for the children who would attend our Easter services. 

We were celebrating Jesus bringing new life
and planting seeds seemed like the perfect way
for these children to carry this truth
home in their heart.

Surprisingly, though,
when the first service began
and the children kept filing in,
I knew I wouldn't have enough
for the children at the 11:00 am service.

So, here I stood,
in my Easter best,
waiting in line at the check-out counter.

Finally, it was my turn.

"That will be $15.64," the clerk announced.

I opened my wallet and reached in
to pull out my debit card
only to discover my debit card
wasn't there. 

I peeked behind my driver's license. 
I searched through the few measly dollar bills
stuffed in the back. 
No debit card. 

Frantic as to where it might be,
and more than aware
of the long line forming behind me,
I silently prayed, "Help me, Jesus."

"Ma'am.  Is there a problem?  $15.64, please."

I don't carry my checkbook with me,
so I reached for the few dollar bills
I had tucked in the back. 
One ten. One five. One one.
$16.00.
Amazing.

I finished my transaction,
gathered my flower pots,
and headed to the car.
As I unlocked the car door
and climbed inside,
I thanked God for answering my prayer.

As I drove back to church, though,
all I could think about
was my missing debit card.

"Lord, why today?  On Resurrection Day?  On the day I have been looking forward to this entire year? Lord, as I worshipped You at the Sunrise Service, just a few hours ago, my heart was filled to overflowing with tears of joy.  As the children decorated their flower pots during the 8:30 am service, their laughter and comments brought one smile after another. My heart was so full of joy, Lord. Why did this have to happen now?  Today?"

And, then it hit me.

Nothing is too big or too hard for my God.
He is ruler over all things and above all things.
Not even death could hold him back.

"Lord, I'm so sorry.  Please forgive me for allowing something as insignificant as money to steal my joy and diminish my faith.  Lord, I place this in Your hands and I praise You.  You are more than awesome, more than amazing, more than enough.  Thank you for the precious gift of the cross.  Thank you for taking the sting out of death.  Thank you for the oh, so very blessed hope we have in and through You. Thank you for the joy of the resurrection.  Thank you for the joy of knowing You.  I love you, Lord, and I can't wait to worship with the children at the next service."

Arriving back at church,
I shared my story of the missing card,
the $16.00 miracle,
the worry that almost hijacked my joy, 
and the God who is worthy
of our praise in all things.

Once home,
I looked through my wallet again. 
There, safely tucked inside
the zipper coin compartment,
was my bank card. 

It had been there all along. 

Evidently,
the only thing
that had been in jeopardy
of being stolen
on this day of unsurpassed joy
was my joy.

Thank God, even this,
my more-precious-than-silver-or-gold joy,
was safe and secure
when I kept the eyes of my heart
placed firmly on my God.



~Stacy

(Re-posting from April, 2013)



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