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I Found a Penny

By Nancy Roberts
July 16, 2023

It wouldn’t be a life changing event for most people – nothing like winning the lottery. No, just one cent. I found one one-hundredth of a dollar on the ground while camping recently, yet this brought a smile to my face.

Let me explain.

I had found a penny 15 years ago, too. I was in a shopping mall, just wasting nervous energy while waiting for my neurology appointment. I’d been diagnosed with MS a few weeks before and, since this disease initially affected my vision, I had taken a leave of absence from my job as an RN in the operating room. I was waiting for the okay to go back to work.

The “what ifs” flooded my brain with fear. What if I was permanently visually impaired? What about my job? What if I couldn’t drive?  What if? What if… And so, on and on it went — my mind was spinning!

At that moment I happened to look under the bench where my husband and I were seated and found an old worn penny. It was heads up, and I noticed that Abe Lincoln’s head had spots from all the hands it had touched over the years. Just like my head. My MRI showed spots too.

It was the words above his head that affected me though: “In God We Trust.”

“Yes! That’s it!” I thought. I decided right then and there to put all my fears, worries and troubles safely in God’s capable hands. Perhaps in doing this, He could help me make some sense of MS.

I know faith in a higher power isn’t for everyone. Some people don’t believe in anything at all, and some struggle to discover the kind of faith that will carry them through.

The point is, I put my faith in something. I put my trust and anxieties in something other than my “what ifs.” Finding random “cents” reminds me to put my trust in the proper place and make some “sense” of this senseless disease.

And I hope you find your penny, too, whatever it may be.

Nancy Roberts

Nancy Roberts is a registered nurse, currently working in the operating room. She is a mother of two grown children and lives in Woodbury, Minnesota. She has lived with multiple sclerosis for nearly 15 years.

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