Judson's Legacy

Lessons from a Lost Wallet — #1


Last Thursday, Jessie and I had the chance to visit our new home to take measurements and pictures in preparation for our move this Saturday.  Afterward, we decided to stop at the nearby park for Jessie to play.  Meanwhile, I was sitting under an adjacent tree talking on the phone.  Unbeknownst to me, while I was in deep conversation, my wallet fell out of my purse.  So when we stopped at a local coffee shop to have lunch, I was perplexed when I reached for my wallet to buy a drink and it was not there.

I drove home without too much concern expecting to find it sitting on our ottoman; I had just filled my wallet that morning with all our cash for this pay period, so I assumed I had simply forgotten to return it to my purse.

When we arrived home and it wasn’t where I expected to be, I became frantic — overturning every nearby cushion, pillow, and toy in hopes it had just been unwittingly moved.  Within minutes I had turned our car and home upside-down in my search.  Nothing!

I called Drake in a frenzy and he came home from work to help me search.  We retraced all my steps that morning and drove back to the areas Jessie and I had been.  After a couple hours of hunting…still no sign of my wallet!

Drake went back to work and I continued hysterically going over every inch of our home a second, third, and fourth time; then I took the time to call our financial institutions to put a hold on all our accounts.

To describe myself as distraught would probably not do justice to the panic I felt as I imagined us facing the next two weeks without that money, along with feelings of shame for being the one who had lost it.  I was numb, and my conversation with God was silenced by my troubles.

I sat with the reality of a lost wallet for almost 24 hours.  Then my phone rang the next day, “Is this Christina?”  My heart raced with hope.

“Yes, this is Christina?”

“Hi.  My name is Blair.*  I have your wallet.  I found it at the park yesterday and have been trying to reach you ever since.”  I fell on the floor in relief as I listened to her words, blown away that my wallet had been found…by someone with integrity!  She continued, “I actually just spoke with your mom.  It turns out that her address was on an envelope in your wallet and that is how I finally tracked you down.”

I was stunned.

“Actually, your mom mentioned that you are moving to the neighborhood and it sounds like we are going to be neighbors.”

Amazed, I just began expressing my gratitude over and over.  Then we worked out the details for me to come and pick up my lost, black, leather billfold that was now found.

When I drove up to her home, I was shocked to discover that she is literally one of my new neighbors – our garages basically face one another.  Blair warmly invited me into her home and what might have been a brief conversation turned into more than an hour of heart-to-heart dialogue while Jessie played upstairs with two of her three children.  She compassionately engaged my journey with insight and understanding and as we sat on the floor chatting, I began to have a strong sense that this was not a meeting of happenstance, but rather our encounter was as a truly God-ordained gift.   We were discovering our shared values, our common faith, and similar parenting ideals.

At one point in the dialogue when we were discussing Judson, I pulled out one of our information cards with his picture, web address and birth/death dates.  She glanced at it, did a double-take, then looked up at me with tears pooling in her eyes, “My youngest daughter was born on the exact day that Judson died.”

Tears pooled in my eyes too.  I didn’t know how to respond.  But what might have felt like an especially painful coincidence in another circumstance, instead felt like a startling confirmation of God’s presence in our encounter.

As I left her home, I was not only incredibly relieved to have my wallet returned to me, but I left with an abiding sense of God’s hand of care over me.  For out of my panic and shame, God’s grace flowed abundantly. 


Update: Blake and her family have become the dearest of friends!!  

Categories: general life

Categories: general life

9 Responses to "Lessons from a Lost Wallet — #1"

  1. I am speechless!! God is very present…He does not abandon us!!

  2. Cathy Wong says:

    Hi Christina,

    While this did not happen recently, I’ve had my "God’s grace" moments – a couple of times when I lost my wallet [also] while shopping in the mall and lost my mobile phone [on a busy road] – miraculously, only by God’s grace, I got both my wallet and phone – intact! Somehow all the cars that passed that busy stretch of road missed my small phone and the person who found it was kind enough to return it to me! God is amazing!
    Again, what you shared brought tears to my eyes.

  3. Sandy says:

    As I read the story, it just reminded me that not only does God use the bad for good but that He supplies all our needs. I think you found a friend that will make moving so much easier. I think the Lord helped you find the perfect place, where even your neighbor knew your name. God is good~

  4. Samanta says:

    What happened to you is truly amazing, Christina! What an incredible way of finding someone to share this new step in your life! God is always around us…
    Good luck next Saturday on your moving! I will be thinking and praying for you!!!
    A big kiss!

  5. Jody Casares says:

    Wow…amazing. So happy you found your wallet!!! I see God’s grace everyday. He is…well, AMAZING!!!

  6. Robyn Morton says:

    I can’t help it; as I read this and felt your utter despair and shame over losing the wallet and money, then read about your utter joy at having it found and returned to you, intact, as well as giving you the opportunity to make a new friend–I could see the parallels between Jud and your wallet. One can only imagine the joy you will feel when reunited with Jud–an even more powerful example of God’s grace.

    "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound,
    That saved a wretch like me!
    I once was lost, but now am found.
    Was blind, but now I see!"

    God’s grace is given to us so freely.

  7. Wonderful God!! I will be praying as you move this weekend.

  8. Tammy says:

    My story is not a recent one…but one I hold in my heart forever. After my marraige broke up, I didn’t have much. Money was VERY tight. I often did not know how I would put food on the table, gas in the car. Certainly, nothing "extra" left over. Although eventually I would get some of the furniture from my marraige. What I didn’t get was bedroom furniture. My son and I slept together on a blow up mattress for over a year. I was living in Las Vegas..but some friends I had in San Diego one day called me and said they had an extra bed…would I like it?. I was so darn happy. A bed finally for my son…I thanked my father so much for this blessing. I drove to San Diego to go pick it up in my van, staying with another friend in San Diego for that weekend. The amazing part…the part that I KNEW God was there and ACTIVELY looking out for me was when I got back from picking up the bed. I was outside the friends apartment I was staying with, talking with her, when all of a sudden a stranger came up to me and asked if I needed a dresser and a bedroom light. Out of NO WHERE…..Here I am just standing out on the side walk. I think I was in a daze..I shook my head yes, She lead me to an apartment in the same complex as my friend…explained to me she had to be out of her apartment that day..and she had some stuff she didn’t need. I was floored…Here I had come all this way for a bed for my son…and ended up with his whole room furnished. : )

  9. Pamela says:

    I unexpectedly experienced God’s grace today. We are on a very tight budget, so tight that really we don’t have enough to cover rent, utilities, gas and food, but somehow God continues to poor out His grace and provide what we need. We have had a difficult month with multiple illnesses (pink eye, strep, colds) and also a miscarriage. It has been physically exhausting, emotionally draining and financially straining. I was very discouraged, overwhelmed and scared this afternoon when I was thinking of our circumstances. Tonight I went to drop my kids off at Awana at our church (I had debated even going in order to not use up gas) and a friend told me she had something for me. She handed me an envelope and in it was $300. Tears welled up in my eyes as I was overwhelmed by my friend’s generosity and by God’s grace and provision…again!

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