Like many of you, I grew up hearing the little chant “See a penny, pick it up, all day long you’ll have good luck.” I did pick up pennies then, even when I was a little kid, tucking them into my pockets where they were soon forgotten.
When I became a Christian and came to understand that there is no “luck,” but there is the will of a loving, sovereign God, I did not give up my penny-pinching, penny-picking-up habits. If anything, they increased! American pennies, thankfully, still include the words “In God We Trust.” Each time I plucked a penny from the floor of a grocery store, or the wet pavement outside of my car, it reminded me In Whom I Trusted. I’d spend my days praying, and he’d respond in my heart and mind, through the Word or worship music or sometimes . . . with a delightful glint of copper. Call me crazy, but it signaled to me that he was paying attention. “The Lord has remembered us; he will bless us” (Psalm 115:12, ESV).
How happy I am that I had not selected found quarters as an affectionate nod from the Lord—when people drop a quarter, they stop to pick it up regardless of luck! A gentle nudge to my heart taught me that yes, when you look for only big blessings, large interventions, significant and positive changes in circumstance, you miss most of the blessings. Most blessings are small, things that we and others might even forget or overlook, like a dropped penny.
A close-in parking spot on a wet day. A friend who asks you to walk with her. A new recipe. A chance for renewed health. A fine waived. A child’s enthusiasm. I began to open my eyes, not for pennies, but for the small blessings that God dropped into my days, nearly every day, to speak my love language, the one that says, “I am here. I have remembered you. I will bless you.”
The big gifts, rare as they may be, are from him. But so are the small ones, and if I look for them, I will see them all around me, all the time, as a constant reminder of his love.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17
From my devotional, The One Year Experiencing the Love of God, published by Tyndale House Publishers. Please leave a comment, below, to be entered into a drawing for a copy of the book!
Photo © Sandra Byrd.