In my bedroom closet is a old round tin with the face and name of every United States president arranged along a timeline chronicling each man service in the highest office. I don't know where the tin came from. All I know is that, for as long as I can remember, it has been my "change bucket." Some little girls get a piggy bank. I received a presidential history lesson made of tin to hold my silver and gold Lincolns, Jeffersons, Roosevelts and Washingtons.
Today I pulled the presidential container from its dusty shelf. It had been so long since I'd rolled its coin contents and made a trip to the bank to cash in on my change. I dumped the bucket of change on the floor, pulled out coin roll wrappers and began digging for quarters. I always start with quarters, the creme de la creme of the change bucket. Rolling pennies feels like an exercise in futility. Counting fifty little golden Lincolns only garners two George Washingtons. But collect forty Washingtons and the bank will hand over a crisp Hamilton. If time is money there is no competition when it comes to the coin-rolling return on investment.
I laid out my quarters in little stacks of four but when I was all done poking through the contents of my change bucket I only had eight little stacks. Eight quarters short of a single roll. I had just enough nickels to garner two dollars and, after swiping two dimes from my wallet, just enough Roosevelts to equal five dollars.
What I didn't have in quarters, nickels and dimes I had in, you guessed it, pennies. An abundance of pennies. Determined not to waste my time on what I deemed "junk currency" I threw the pennies back in the bucket and decided to wait for more quarters to appear before I made a trip to the bank with my loot.
Poor Lincoln, he got entirely gipped when it comes to coin desirability. Sure, his is the only coin thats the color gold but what is it really worth? Pennies can't even purchase a stick of gum. Unless they are stuck in the toe box of a loafer pennies don't have much appeal. A penny laying in a parking lot is easily passed by but a quarter? I'll stop for a quarter.
The truth is Lincoln isn't the only one who is getting ripped off. God manufactures pennies in the form of moments, winks and blessings yet I pass them by as if they were a heads-down penny in a parking lot. I want the quarters - the big, life-changing, exciting blessings of God. I want the job offer, the romantic relationship, the health, the book deal, the legs that run the race and come in first and the trips that fill a photo album with camera-worthy memories.
But I'm underwhelmed by pennies.
Pennies are what God has given me. He's given me these precious little moments that, on the surface, don't appear to make much of a life. I've been given quiet mornings with my Bible and a blank page in my journal. I've been given legs that move and walk the dogs faithfully each day. God has given me an abundance of pennies in nieces, nephews, brothers and sisters. The kitchen full of food, the comfy mattress on my bed and the tulips in my front yard are all better than pennies - they are God's gifts to me.
This morning when I awoke I wanted to be showered in quarter-sized blessings. But God rained down pennies instead. But this time, instead of throwing them back in the bucket, I counted them out and rolled each one. I choose to see the worth and value in the little moments because they are special and precious. They are invaluable treasures. The penny moments of life are the priceless pinholes in which I get to see the glorious goodness of God on full display each and every day.