Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Lost Wallet

Alia is collecting stories of faith from all of our extended family members, and tonight I found one I recorded on November 24, 2009.  Thought I would repost it here.  Such a great experience:
Tonight was very, very sweet. I'd had a L-O-N-G day with all the children off track, trying to get ready for Thanksgiving, recover from my surgery, run errands, etc., and Eric was only home for about 30 minutes in between work and meetings at church.

We'd been praying all day that Eric could find his wallet. He lost it somewhere between a restaurant and home on Friday night, and he couldn't find it anywhere...which wouldn't be that big of a deal except for the fact that he's supposed to get on an airplane in a few days, and he kind of needs his I.D. I called the airport and tried to figure out what it would take to get on the plane without a driver licence, but it all boiled down to getting a temporary one from the DMV tomorrow. Eric doesn't have time to go, and I have so much to do. I barely have enough energy to keep things going here at home--there's no way I can squeeze three hours of line-waiting at the DMV into my day.

After I tucked Spencer and Ethan in bed, I knelt down in the living room and prayed that somehow we would be able to find Eric's wallet. I knew that if we didn't find it, the Lord would give me the strength to get all the necessary things done tomorrow, but I said, "If I could just ask for one thing, it would be to find the wallet."

I then went upstairs and started feeling sorry for myself. My thoughts went something like this: "Why does everything have to be so hard? I'm so tired. I haven't even had the chance to recover from my surgery because I have so many little children who need me. We had a weekend of fevers, I've been in this house for several days without a break, and Eric is doing such a good job serving as the bishop, but he's gone all the time, and I just need help."

Then Alia walked into the room and said, "Mom! I KNOW the Spirit helped me! I found Dad's wallet!" She lifted her hands and, sure enough, there it was. She'd found it in the nightstand drawer--a place he NEVER keeps it--the nightstand is usually empty because Spencer likes to dump the contents out all over the floor. Alia had tears in her eyes and said, "I've been thinking of that spot all day. I'm so glad I found it!"

We knelt down right there in my room and thanked the Lord for helping us, and then we called Eric to let him know the good news. I took Alia and Grace downstairs and snuggled them on the couch and explained how grateful I was to the Lord for looking out for us. I told them how I'd been feeling frustrated about everything, and how this was a huge blessing to me. Alia said, "Mom, you were starting to doubt everything, but the Lord helped us."

We kept talking about how we need to have faith in God's power and how we need to record experiences that strengthen our faith. Alia kept talking about the experience over and over again and said, "I will NEVER forget this." The rest of our evening was filled with a sweet feeling of love and gratitude, and when Eric came home, Alia happily presented his wallet to him and was SO excited to tell him all about her experience.

Part of this blessing was for Eric. He needed his wallet. Part of this blessing was for me. I needed relief from all the demands on me right now. But most of this blessing was for my girls. The Lord has helped people find purses and keys and wallets and shoes and all kinds of things throughout the ages, and I think He does this so we will remember to believe in Him and to trust in Him. Some day, Alia is going to need help with something much bigger, and because of this sweet experience tonight, she'll know where to go for that help.


  1. What a sweet story. I especially love the last paragraph, particularly the last line: "Some day, Alia is going to need help with something much bigger, and because of this sweet experience tonight, she'll know where to go for that help."

    When I was in the midst of infertility, my aunt did a beautiful painting to encourage me, and I accidentally misplaced it in the airport. I was devastated, and I prayed for help to find it. I was shocked when I actually found it a few minutes later. This is what I wrote in my journal that night:

    "Stories of God helping people find things sometimes really bother me. When I hear people bear testimony that God helped them find their CTR ring or cell phone or whatever, I think it somewhat trivializes the true meaning of prayer. I always think, 'There are people in this congregation who have been earnestly praying for years for God to bless them with children, or heal them of a terminal disease, or help them overcome destructive addictions...If God hasn't yet answered their heart wrenching prayers, how is it going to make them feel to hear that He has responded to such trivial concerns?' Yet, I do think that God helped me find the painting. Despite my skepticism of such tales, I had the thought, 'The painting is around here. Talk to someone else.' Maybe God can't always solve all of our biggest problems (such as infertility) because they are just part of the mortal experience and the test...but He can show His love for us by helping out with little things along the way--those 'tender mercies' that let us know that He is listening and wants to help us in any way that He can."

    1. Love those thoughts. Yes, the "little things" aren't a huge deal, but these small experiences let us know He's listening. Thanks Rachel!


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