Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Purse and a Prayer

Friday night my wife Amber and I were watching the Portland Trailblazer basketball game on TV. They were playing the Golden State Warriors and were in the process of getting beat. Amber realized we needed a few things from the store so when she left I turned the TV off to read for a while. I was reading about Oswald Chambers in a book that I'm working my way through. I came to a passage that said that he had experienced answered prayer in his life. When I read that I thought, I would like to experience that too.

About 15 minutes later I heard the garage door open. But after a couple of minutes I realized that Amber hadn't come in yet. Then she burst through the door and said she thought she had left her purse in the shopping cart at the grocery store parking lot. As she ran out the door to double check the car, she told me to call the store. I called to give them the information as Amber was leaving to drive back.

When I hung up I immediately ask God for help. I thought of all the ramifications that would come from losing everything in her purse. I must admit I don't always think to pray when a bad situation comes, but I was just reading about prayer and this problem was too big for us to do anything ourselves. I continued to read and tried not to think about what the possibilities would be for the next few hours. The phone rang about 5 minutes later and it was Steve from the store. He was out of breath when he said, "I found it". Those were nice words to hear. Fortunately he didn't follow up with, "it's empty". I thanked him for taking the time to find it and when I hung up I thanked God.

Some might say it's coincidence while others will say it's not related and some will say it's luck. But in my humble opinion I think God was involved. Wouldn't it be possible that these kinds of experiences are happening to us more than we know but we're just not seeing it? I firmly believe that it's through the grace of God that I get to my destination each time I ride.

I told this story to some people at a meeting yesterday morning. When I was done one of the guys asked if we'd heard the story about the guy whose wife got her wallet stolen. The husband didn't report it because each month the thief was spending less than his wife.


  1. I often forget to pray on the little things. I know no job is too big or too small for God. Thank God it was found. I can't imagine all we would lose if my wife ever lost hers.

  2. The world is full of good stories like this, we just don't seem to hear about it as often. Thanks for the reminder about the goodness in people.
    A long time ago, I had stopped at a convenience store, came out of the store with a bunch of small items in my hands, put my wallet on top of the car to unload the stuff I had bought into the car, and yes, of course, drove off with the wallet still on the roof of the car.
    Didn't of course realize the wallet was missing until I got home. About an hour later I got a phone call. Someone had found it on the road and turned it in at the entrance to a local air base. Everything was still there. My faith in mankind restored.

  3. Mike:

    being the non believer that I am, I tend to think that they would have found the purse in any event. If you had just waited a little longer I think you would have gotten the phone call.

    bobskoot: wet coast scootin

  4. Danny,
    Thanks for your comment, I appreciate it. I agree with everything you said.

    cpa 3485 (Jim),
    You were fortunate to get your wallet back. I have to say my faith in mankind is spotty. We have a lock on our front door and I'll bet you do too. Thank you for reading this and commenting. I appreciate your input.

    Thank you too for your comment and for being honest about where you stand. I have a few things I could respond with but I think I'll just say the same as above. When I trust in people they often let me down. I try myself not let people down but I do from time-to-time.

    When I write about my faith I'm merely putting it out for people to come to their own conclusions. But similar to when Irondad writes about riding technique and I think about it while I'm riding, I hope that what is written here comes back to mind for consideration.

    Thanks again Bob.

  5. Mike:

    I was toying with you to stimulate discussion.

    I have a kind heart and go out of my way to help others even though they may not realize it.

    Many years ago I knew this budding photographer who had a hard time trying to make ends meet. He was always short of rent, had few paying jobs and didn't have the proper equipment to do the job. He wanted to earn money by photographing weddings. I used to meet up with a group on
    Saturdays and we would hang around the Camera store and go for coffee, or walk around town taking street pictures. I knew his situation so often I would just include his beverage on my tab. One day I heard that he had to turn down a wedding assignment because he didn't have a proper flash unit. I had an expensive one with power pack and powerful head (Metz or Braun, can't remember). It was capable of shooting full power all night without turning it off. I decided to sell it to him for a nominal price so he could earn money to live and eat. It was worth hundreds but I sold it to him for $100., and I really wanted to keep it for myself. It wasn't actually for sale. Things don't have a value if you get it for free so I did the next best thing. Gave him a deal.
    A week or so later I asked him how things were going. He said the wedding went okay. I asked about the flash and he said he sold it after he did the job. Well, obviously I'm not a fool but he didn't understand that I was trying to give him the tools of the trade.

    bobskoot: wet coast scootin

  6. Bob,
    You know, I was wondering if you were messing with me. I was going to suggest for you to leave your wallet at a store parking lot and wait at home for the call to test your theory.

    I wonder how much that guy got for your flash.

  7. Mike:

    You just made me smile. We are talking about Vancouver here. Centre of crime, homeless people, disgraced police, drug dealers. I think if I left my wallet on top of the car and walked away, I would turn around and it would already be gone.

    It really upset me to know that this person was only interested in the short term. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, teach him to fish and he will . . .

    Sometimes there are good situations. I knew another budding photographer who needed a good camera. I had a Leica SL which was worth at least $1,000. including the Summicron 50. I sold it to him for $300. He knew he had a deal. He kept that camera and used it to earn money. Everytime I saw him he kept thanking me for selling it to him. I also took payments over time at $100. per month, and he paid me as agreed. It really made me feel good to have been able to help him get a start. This was probably 20 years ago, and I notice that camera has entered cult status and is very desirable as a collectible, even today.

    bobskoot: wet coast scootin

  8. Bob,
    You're a good man "Charlie Brown". In both cases you were generous even though the end results were different.

  9. I believe we have to live in harmony with our prayers. If we ask for grace we're tasked with showing it. If we ask for mercy, the same applies. And so on. No strings and no accounting. Thus we may give to someone like Bobskoot's first photographer. That's part of what the bible calls being created in God's image. Sometimes we are rewarded in ways we can see. Other times not. If we don't see it now, it doesn't mean it's not coming.

    I guess the important part is to faithfully stay the course. I figure whatever comes next will be fair.

    That's the thought of a motorcycle nut, since you opened the door. :)