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Find A Penny, Pick It Up, And Think

Several years ago, a woman and her husband were invited to spend the weekend at the home of the husband's employer.

The woman was nervous about the weekend.  The boss was very wealthy.  He had a fine home on the waterway and cars costing more than her house.

The first day and evening went well.  The woman was delighted to have this rare glimpse into how the very wealthy live.  Her husband's employer was quite generous as a host, and took them to the finest restaurants.  The woman knew she would never have the opportunity to indulge in this kind of extravagance again, so she was enjoying herself immensely.

As the three of them were about to enter an exclusive restaurant one evening, the boss was walking slightly ahead of the woman and her husband.  He stopped suddenly, looking down on the pavement for a long, silent moment.  The woman wondered if she was supposed to pass him.  There was nothing on the ground except a single darkened penny that someone had dropped and a few cigarette butts.  Still silent, the man reached down and picked up the penny.  He held it up, smiled, then put it in his pocket as if he had found a great treasure.

The woman thought to herself, "How absurd!  What need did this man have for a single penny?  Why would he even take the time to stop and pick it up?"

Throughout dinner, the entire scene nagged at her.  Finally, she could stand it no longer.  She casually mentioned that her daughter once had a coin collection, and asked if the penny he had found had been of some value.

A smile crept across the man's face as he reached into his pocket for the penny and held it out for her to see.

She said, "I have seen many pennies before.  What is the point of this?"

"Look at it," he said.  "Read what it says."

She read the words, "United States of America."

He replied, "No, not that.  Read further."

She said, "One cent?"

He replied, "No.  Keep reading."

She said, "In God we Trust?"

He said, "Yes!"

She said, "And . . ."

He replied, "And if I trust in God, the name of God is holy, even on a coin.  Whenever I find a coin, I see that inscription.  It is written on every single United States coin, but we never seem to notice it.  God drops a message right in front of me telling me to trust Him.  Who am I to pass it by?  When I see a coin, I pray.  I stop to see if my trust is in God at that moment.  I pick the coin up as a response to God that I do trust in Him.  For a short time, at least, I cherish it as if it were gold.  I think it is God's way of starting a conversation with me.  Lucky for me, God is patient and pennies are plentiful."

A few days later, when the woman was shopping, she found a penny on the sidewalk.  She stopped and picked it up, and realized that she had been worrying and fretting in her mind about things that she could not change.  She read the words, "In God We Trust," and started to laugh.  She said, "Yes, God, I get the message!"