Late last week I stopped by a parcel store to return a few items to Amazon. It should’ve been free but the woman behind the counter told me it would cost $2. I handed her my debit card and then she told me it wasn’t accepted unless the cost was $5 or more. “Grrrr!” She said I was welcome to buy a soft drink and cookies or candy which were conveniently nearby. Not wanting anything I asked her to wait, walked out to my truck and began digging out pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters from the coin slot. I use my debit card almost exclusively so the coins had been collected over several years. They were dirty and sticky from a tube of chapstick that had busted. I wiped them off, spread them out on the driver’s seat, counted out $2, and took them in to the clerk. All paid up I went home.
I thought about those coins as I drove. Until the moment I used them they were just… there. Many times I almost gave them to someone, deposited them, even thought of throwing the messy ones away. Then, not even realizing I would need them, they were there for me.
Perhaps this is life. Things that seem useless become useful, stuff taking up space are the right fit at the right time, jobs that are hard and wear us down reveal a purpose and show us why we are needed, people we didn’t know we could count on reveal themselves to be true friends.
Life is full of surprises and grace. Being mindful that all things could be a blessing in disguise is both challenging and rewarding.