Trudy Smith

Trudy Smith. Photo courtesy Minnesota Conference.

It was a Sunday morning, offering me the opportunity to immerse myself in comfort, peace, and contentment as I lounged in bed with my purring cats.

“Thank you,” I breathed softly. “Thank you, Lord, for this normality I’m enjoying that so many people in this disturbed world would love to experience.”

After completing my devotions and Bible reading I opened the November Guideposts magazine to my favorite regular feature, “Mysterious Ways,” and began reading. The narrative that unfolded was about a lady who had completed some Christmas shopping at Walmart, but upon reaching her car could not locate the keys. She was positive they were in her purse. Fortunately, she had forgotten to lock the car doors so she was able to empty the contents of her purse on the passenger seat and methodically search the interior.

As she continued seeking the elusive keys, she noticed a woman in a motorized wheelchair approach a van that she appeared to own. Apparently, the woman was blocked from entering her van by another vehicle that had parked too closely. The Walmart shopper paused the search for her keys in order to back the wheelchair-bound woman’s van out of the parking space and allow her to lower the wheelchair lift.

Upon returning to her car, the first lady automatically thrust her hand into her purse and, to her amazement, clutched the lost keys!

At this point, to my own astonishment, my thoughts were suddenly transported back to a rainy June day last summer. My husband and I had just parked in front of a local hangout.

“You go ahead without me, Jerry,” I said. “I am going to look for my wallet one more time. Just in case.”

He exited our car and I began to pray: “Lord, I have looked for that wallet in here over and over. If it’s here, please, show me where.”

For several days, I had put off calling the credit card company hoping that my wallet of cards and cash would reappear. Every search had been fruitless. I was at my wit’s end and about to panic. This was it. The final search.

“Ok, here goes, God.” With that utterance, my eyes seemed drawn to the opening between the front seats where I had sought the wallet several times before—and wonder of wonders—there it was! Overwhelmed with relief and extreme gratitude, I grabbed the wallet and ran into the café.

“Jerry, look! Here it is—” The words had barely escaped my lips when my eyes were immediately compelled to look out the large glass windows near us. There, in the steady downpour, a young woman pushed a shopping cart containing suitcases and a purse.

I knew immediately what my mission must be. “I’ll be right back,” I informed my puzzled husband. The newly-found wallet in hand, I hurried out the door to catch up with the young woman. Taking a $20 bill from my wallet, I asked, “Would this be of help to you?”

She nodded, reaching for the money. “Yes, but I could really use someone to talk to more.”

We went into the coffee shop and sipped warm beverages as she shared the intensely personal struggles burdening her. We prayed and shed tears together before she departed.

So, what was the Sunday morning revelation? Simply experiencing a similar situation of finding and giving?

No, much more. I am still overwhelmed by the wonder of God’s personal intervention when I think of how He blinded my eyes until just the right moment in order to use me to impart His love to someone in need.

What a God we serve! What a testimony He gave me to share! I couldn’t wait to relate this experience to friends and students.

As an Adventist educator, my joyous mission is to continually demonstrate how faithful, loving and saving our God is, and also what a privilege it is that He allows us to be awake to the opportunities of mercy we can carry out for Him.

Trudy Smith teaches grades 1-4 at Maranatha Adventist School in Dodge Center, Minnesota.