The year was 1989.
The young man was the most unassuming of characters. If he bothered even one person in a day, he thought it to be one too many. So it only stood to reason that this angst of mammoth proportions was now consuming him on this snowy, wintry night.
To most people it would seem the most ridiculous of concerns – a lost pager. To most people, yes, but to this shy laboratory technician, it was no capricious matter.
John had started working at the medical laboratory a year earlier. He was a likeable person, always pleasant in character despite the fact that he was so bashful. He worked hard and quickly gained the trust of the supervisors at the facility. Therefore, it was no surprise when his position was elevated; that is, if you consider working midnights a promotion. Nonetheless, he was soon given a pager and responsibilities for obtaining laboratory specimens from the area hospitals, as well as from the nursing homes. It was on his first night in this position – a lonely, cold night – that he dropped the pager.
Because he was a man of faith, John immediately prayed. Within moments, a mental picture of where he should look for the pager filled his mind. He immediately drove to the nearby hospital and walked straight toward the entrance. There lay the pager, almost completely covered with snow. He rejoiced and thanked the God of heaven, who loved him enough to answer his seemingly selfish, insignificant request that had ostensibly become so monumental to him.
Fast-forward fifteen years.
John was no longer so unassuming, as he had long since graduated from college, married, and became responsible for so much more than he ever would have imagined. But he still worked midnights. It was on a similar wintry night this many years later that he received a frantic phone call from his wife.
“I can’t find my passport!” she exclaimed, nearly on the brink of tears.
They two of them had planned the upcoming trip to the Philippines for nearly a year now. In many ways, they had anticipated certain contingencies: delayed flights, illnesses, etc. But a lost passport was not one of them.
“Is it with the others in the drawer?” John queried.
“Of course not. That was the first place I looked.”
John suggested several other places to look, but his wife had already checked them all. He then recalled the many ways that the Lord had helped them through the years. There were indeed many boundless ways in which the Lord had helped them – far too many to count. These acts of benevolence would seem almost insignificant to many people, hardly worth mentioning, really – but not to John and his wife. Of course, this is not to neglect the many tremendous acts that God performed in their lives, but that is another story altogether.
“Listen, I’ll pray and you go look for it again.”
John quickly prayed, and soon felt the presence of the Lord fill his heart. He knew that his wife would find that passport. Within moments, he received another call from his wife.
“Did you pray for me?”
Her voice teetered on the brink of an emotion outburst.
Tears of joy began to stream down her face. “I found it. After we hung up, I suddenly thought to look in the filing cabinet, and there it was.”
The two of them rejoiced that God had once again showed his wonderful, unimaginable love toward them.
The occurrence brings to my mind a parable.
Suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, 'Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.' In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents."
Luke 15:8-10 (NIV)
In light of eternity, the daily trials of our life might seem insignificant to us, but not to the Lord. He cares so much for us, in fact, that He’s even numbered the hairs on our head. But most of all, God shows His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Now that’s definitely something worth rejoicing about!