By Mark Ellis –
In the Scripture, Jesus tells parables about finding a lost coin, lost sheep, and a lost son, revealing his heart to find lost souls and restore them to fellowship with God.
My wife Sally has found it helpful to pray when somewhat mundane items like car keys or phones have been misplaced, and it seems the Holy Spirit always directs her to their location.
But her faith was severely challenged recently on a family vacation in San Diego when she lost a pair of swim goggles about 25 yards off shore.
She came in and scanned the Pacific Ocean with a forlorn expression. “Why don’t you go out and look for them?” her daughter-in-law, Rebecca asked.
“No, that’s a big ocean out there. There’s no way. It’s a needle-in-a-haystack. If you lose something out there it’s gone.”
She admitted later she had no faith whatsoever to find the goggles. All she saw was a giant ocean. Even worse, the goggles were dark-colored and blended with the water.
An hour later, her son Sam was surfing in a completely different area from the one where his mother lost the goggles. He yelled at his brother, Nate: “Hey, mom lost her goggles. See if you see them.”
Sally didn’t know if the goggles could float. They could be at the bottom of the ocean, Sam thought to himself. If they do float, maybe I’ll see them, but I would have to be real close, like right on top of them.
Sam threw up a prayer to God, “Jesus, help me find them.”
Sam took his last wave of the family vacation and it was a great ride. He fell off the board and then hopped back on another wave to carry him toward shore.
As he rode that last wave the goggles suddenly appeared in the foam of the whitewater right next to his hand as he was riding past and he scooped them up.
“Jesus put them right in my hand!” he exclaimed.
Oh my gosh this is too funny, he thought, so he hid the goggles when he approached his mother standing on the beach in her wetsuit.
“That was a great wave!” she said.
“Yeah, but you’ll never believe what I found.”
He held up the goggles and his mother’s jaw dropped.
“What?” she stammered. “That was an hour ago.”
“I just prayed while I was out there, ‘Jesus, can you find mom’s goggles,’ and on the wave as I was surfing, my hand goes down and hits the water and here they are. He put them right in my hand!”
They began laughing with the joy of the Lord, recognizing that Jesus is the only one who could have put them in Sam’s hand.
“The amazing thing is that we started our family vacation sitting around a table one whole morning, telling stories of the miracles of Jesus, all the things the young people have seen because they have such faith in him,” Sally recounts.
“We started talking about miracles and we ended the vacation with a miracle.”