I’ve heard of “pennies from heaven” before but had not known that some lucky people are blessed with dimes from above. My friend Laura told me a story this week about how she came to discover the dimes God places in her path. She was in her early twenties and was devastated after ending her first relationship. While attending an AL-Anon meeting, Laura heard the story of another woman who held a jar full of dimes, claiming that every time she was feeling lonely or lost, God would send a message of hope in the form of a dime. This piqued Laura’s interest. She rolled her eyes in disbelief and scoffed at the story, but deep inside she wondered if there was some truth to it.
Later that same day, she was sobbing uncontrollably, feeling the pain of her loss, standing in the quiet of an empty room. She rested her hand on the room’s only surface – a tall chest of drawers. She felt something smooth under the palm of her hand and stopped her pity party immediately. Imagine her astonishment when she lifted a shiny dime from under her hand!
Now, Laura was a believer…but not the church-going, pray-all-day kind. More of the “I’ll-call-you-when-I-need-you,” kind of follower. Well, let’s just say this dime was God’s way of telling her it’s time for a chat! Laura immediately recognized the dime as a comforting sign of his presence. And now, more than 20 years later, she still collects the dimes the Lord sends from heaven during times of darkness and despair. She’s found them in the most unusual places and is absolutely certain they are sent from above.
Why a dime and not a penny? I don’t think it has anything to do with inflation; more of a scarcity issue. The US Mint reports there are 1,454 million pennies in circulation; compared to 391 million dimes. So the chances of finding a dime are slim – unless, of course, God plants one in your path.
I must admit, I’ve never looked for God’s presence in the form of an abandoned coin. And I’m not one of those people who actually hears the voice of God talking directly to me. Nor do I have visions created by angels in my dreams. No, my dime is not nearly as shiny or obvious as these messages from heaven.
So how do I recognize the signs of God’s presence in my life? Well, I don’t always acknowledge it immediately, because he often speaks to me in a more subtle manner. He sends his dime into the center of my heart taking up residence along with the joy or pain I am feeling. Then he just sits there waiting for me to remember that he is with me. Waiting for me to recall that he is at the center of everything. He tugs at my heart – sometimes allowing me to tumble deeper into darkness – until something triggers my understanding. A kind word from a friend. A song lyric or scripture quote. A stranger’s tragedy. Something captures my eye and brings his presence into my awareness again. It’s not as elegant a process as finding dimes in the street. And I don’t have a jar full of tangible proof. But it’s his way of getting my attention nonetheless.
How does God get your attention? What kind of dime does he place in your path? I’d love to hear your story.
Copyright 2011 Theresa Ceniccola