Sometimes I scare myself by how scattered I am….more accurately how scattered my things are. This translates to a lot of missing or lost objects, often really precious or important objects. Thankfully, God has been so overwhelmingly merciful and has consistently helped me find that which was lost. So when my handsome hubby misplaced our camera’s SD card, I was quick to bring it to the Lord in prayer. However, that wasn’t always my first inclination….
I didn’t grow up around my grandparents, but when I was 14 I finally had the chance to visit my dad for a summer, and I’ll never forget one such lost and found episode with my grandmother. We had just parked as I realized I couldn’t find my mini-m&ms container full of my cash and I was sure it had fallen out at the store.
“Did ya forget something?” She asked sweetly (it felt even sweeter as I was still getting used to all the southern accents).
“Yeah,….well” then my shoulders sunk as I accepted defeat “I think I lost all my money”
“Hey hey hey….don’t worry.” She sat down in the back seat with me and beamed, “We can just pray for help to find it!”
Now at this moment I was proud of myself for not rolling my eyes. I didn’t grow up in the church and had mostly spent that summer thinking I was so intellectually superior than all these brainwashed country folk, so refraining my sarcasm was a labor of love at this point. So I did my best to answer with a sincere “Really?”
“Of course! Nothing is hidden from Him, so we might as well ask! He cares about everything in our lives, especially if it’s something upsetting us. It doesn’t matter how big or small the problem is because WE are what matters to Him. C’mon, lets pray”
So I bowed in reverence and mostly ignored what she was praying, but somewhere in the middle I remember thinking “Ok God, if you’re real, then yeah…it would be cool to find it, so if you could help that would be neat…and um…if you do help, I guess …thanks”. As soon as the prayer was over, we got up to head inside and with the way my grandma twisted in the seat it revealed where the canister had slid between them. She grabbed it and raised it above her head shouting “GLORY TO GOD!! HALLELUJAH!! THANK YOU JESUS!!!” I was happy to find it, but still very skeptical. I even suspected she saw it and sat down to stage the whole prayer and reveal. (This is why God doesn’t perform miracles to prove Himself, even if he did, our harden hearts wouldn’t accept it as truth. Take breathing air for example…a daily miracle we take for granted!).
I said, “That’s cool Grandma, but how do you know it was God?” I thought to myself ” I mean, it was there the whole time…it’s not like He moved or anything…we would have probably found it later anyways”.
She drew closer and looked me in the eye “I just know. You should too. All I know is that it was lost, we prayed, and now it is found. That’s it. Just remember to always give Him the Glory and He’ll do it again”
I walked away still thinking she was a mastermind kool-aid mixer, but 3 years later after searching for weeks for my senior ring, I recalled my moment with her and humbled myself in prayer. By this time I had recently came to know the Lord so when I immediately found it after the prayer, I took it for the miracle it was. I suddenly remembered taking my ring off and placing it on the top hood of my car as my dad was showing me how to check the oil. I must have left it there….two weeks of driving and heavy rain later I heard it jingle as I shut the car door after my prayer. It wasn’t stuck or jammed into the seam, it was gently rocking back and forth over my door.
That was it, I was sold. I knew my salvation was in Christ alone, and I was thankful for that….but in many ways I didn’t (and still don’t) realize how much God LOVED me. He DOES care about the trivial things, and he delights in blessing us…He just wants to be part of a RELATIONSHIP. He could have given me my ring at anytime during those two weeks I searched endlessly…but by waiting until I came to Him in prayer, He gave me so much more than a ring, He gave me FAITH.
Since then, I have never lost something without finding it eventually, engagement rings, earrings, drivers license, cell phones….some of the stories most people have difficulty believing. Once after a late shift as a waitress, I discovered my car window busted and my purse was stolen. A few days later I got a call from a grocery store on the other side of town where they found my purse and everything in it, including my wallet, everything still intact!
It might be minor to some, but this history of miracle finds have given me a boldness to pray with others who loose things. Usually I shy away from unsolicited prayer because the pride of appearing brainwashed still seeps it’s way in at times. Yet, my experience has made me compassionate to others who loose things and to be at peace when I do myself.
There is no “correct formula” to pray, but when I lose something, my prayers generally follow this sort of pattern. I thank God for remembering to come to Him first and for losing the item in the first place because I know “He works all things to good of those who trust in Him” (Romans 8:28). I thank Him for dying on the cross for my sins as I remember that His grace is sufficient.
At this point, with a better perspective on things, I see what was lost as just an object that will someday be dust, and that I can honestly live without it. Sometimes I feel God leading me to recognize any possible idolatry or misplaced affection, maybe some pride or folly in what lead to the item being lost in the first place. After that, I humbly ask Him to help me find it knowing that if He does, it’s simply out of His love for me to make my life easier…that it’s not at all a need. I also express my trust that if I shouldn’t have whatever it is for some reason, then out of His love for me, may it remain removed from my life.
After praying I ALWAYS feel connected with my God and at peace, which is more of the goal than getting your object back. Yet, He’s usually pretty quick with His affection. Once I found something tucked under some clutter on my desk because dropping to my knees shifted my vantage point, and as soon as I opened my eyes from the prayer I was looking directly at it!
So this week when we couldn’t find the SD card will all our pictures, (important pictures…I mean, THE BIRTH OF OUR SON) we needed prayer big time. We did the usual step retrace, but soon the panic and anger started to swell and God thankfully laid it on my heart to pray just in time. We prayed and God was not only faithful to deliver the SD card (HALLELUJAH!!!) but even more precious, an awesome moment of connection between my husband and I with our Gracious Creator. A gift of togetherness and unity that we didn’t even realize we needed so desperately and to God I give all the glory, honor and PRAISE!
So when I stop to think about it, of course I should try and keep better track of my things to be a better steward of what God has blessed me with. However, I shouldn’t let it get to the point of stressing myself or anyone else out about it. God’s got this, and He does a WAY better job of taking care of things than I ever could. Where we are weak, He is strong. So instead of scaring myself with how scattered I am….I should instead marvel at how faithful and put together God is. 🙂
How about you, any personal traits that make you shudder? How do you handle it when you lose something? I’d love to hear any great lost and found stories below!