The following ripe banana story was written by a dear friend and mentor, Kitty Jones. I realized today the similarities between this story and the last one I posted. In both cases something we, from a human perspective, might deem as “bad” happened yet it is through undesirable situations and trials such as these, God reaches down to hand us a ripe banana and to offer us a glorious taste of His goodness and mercy, just as the psalmist says:
Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 23:6
This is such a great reminder to praise Him even in the mist of hard and unpleasant times! How would we know Him to be our Guide if we never needed guidance? How could we say He is our Comforter and Shield if we never needed to be comforted or protected? How could I trust Him as my Provider if I was never in need of provisions? We do not praise Him in ignorance, as though our faith rested solely on the truth of other’s testimonies but we praise Him as ones who have encountered Him again and again. Thru everyday moments like the one described below, we know firsthand He is good, merciful, holy, powerful, gentle, wise… How has He recently revealed Himself to you?
I just have to tell you something that happened to me one recent afternoon that demonstrated God’s loving-kindness to me. Psalm 138:2 says “I will… praise thy name for thy loving-kindness and for thy truth…” I see lovingkindness as that which provides benefit for another going beyond what is vital or truly necessary.
I went to have an x-ray of my shoulder and removed my necklace, placing it deep within the pocket of my slacks. This necklace is my most-prized temporal possession. It contains my engagement diamond, my 25th anniversary diamond and 2 diamonds that were first worn in my father’s ring and after his death in a pendant my mother wore. I wore that pendant after she died until last year when Norm and I decided to have those 2 diamonds and my previous 2 redesigned into a new pendant. So the necklace has sentimental value for me far beyond words.
When I got home the necklace was not in my pocket. I searched high and low of course, turning my offending slacks inside out, checking the hems, etc. I retraced my steps since I had exited my car – nothing. I was literally sick to my stomach. Norm suggested we return to the hospital and retrace my steps there. I was skeptical but what more did we have to lose? On the pavement right beside where I was parked, there it was, glistening in the sunshine. No one had driven over it or stepped on it or anything!
Receiving that necklace back was not vital to my life or my walk with God. It was just a kind gesture by my heavenly Father, preserving the eyes of others from noticing it, encouraging our return trip, and demonstrating His loving-kindness to this very grateful daughter of His.
Norm and Kitty Jones have ministered through Christian camping at Mt. Gilead since they were married in 1966. Kitty can be contacted via Facebook; her username is: “Kitty Jones Mt. Gilead.” Find out more about Mt. Gilead by visiting http://www.mtgilead.org/