Thursday, January 6, 2011

Story Time

I'm an ice cube.
And my fingers are blue.
I've decided that if someone can't figure out a way to get the furnace fixed I'm taking a semi-permanent leave of absence from work.
Ben?  That's a hint.

Thank you for your comments yesterday.
I've learned something about all of you...something good...
And as a result I promise you I will never say the word fat again.
Ever.
But just between you and me, I was way more worried about having MS than that other word.

Today is Epiphany day in Canada.
What do you suppose that means?

I'm going to tell you a story.  It's a personal story...one I wouldn't normally share with the entire world.
But as far as I know, there is not a single person in Asia who reads my blog, so I won't be sharing with the entire world anyway.
(I honestly can't remember if I've told this story before.)

When I was 12 or 13 my mom took me with her to do some Christmas shopping.
We were in a clothing store and she was looking for something for my dad.
I passed by the coat section and saw a coat that I loved.
Loved. Loved. Loved.
It was black, and had yellow fleece lining.
I tried the coat on and wore it the whole time my mom did her shopping.

I knew Mom wouldn't buy me the coat.
In fact, up until that point in my life, I'm not sure if I had ever had a brand new coat.
Usually we wore hand-me-downs.
I put the coat back on the hanger when it was time to go.
And I sighed a big sigh.

A few weeks later, on Christmas morning, I opened my present and found the coat tucked lovingly inside the wrapping paper.
I was the world's happiest girl.

One night several weeks after Christmas we went to an activity at the church.
I hung the coat on the coat rack and ran off with my friends.
A couple of hours later, when it was time to leave, I went for my coat but couldn't find it anywhere.
After a very thorough search of the entire church building, I came to the conclusion that my coat was gone.
Oh...the tears I cried...
And cried.
That night when I went to bed I said a very tearful and heartfelt prayer: "Please Heavenly Father, help me get my coat back.'
I repeated that prayer many times over the next few days.
Whenever my mom suggested that we needed to get me a new coat I would tell her no.
I knew that I would find my coat.

One night as I was just crawling into bed I said one final prayer.  "Heavenly Father, I KNOW that You know where my coat is.  I have faith that You will help me."
I fell asleep and had a dream.
In my dream I saw a boy from my band class.
The boy was wearing my coat.
The next morning I told my mom, 'I know who has my coat.  I think I'll get it back today.'
And then I told her about the dream.

I went to school, but the boy did not come to band class.
I didn't see him the entire day.
That afternoon, Mom and I were going to the grocery store.
As we pulled into the parking lot I saw the boy from band class, walking across the parking lot.
He was wearing my coat.
"Mom, there's that boy!  And he has my coat!"
Mom was a bit skeptical.  "How can you be sure it's your coat?  Maybe he has one just like it."
"Mom, I know that is my coat."
After much pleading, Mom confronted the boy and said, "You have my daughter's coat."
He denied it.  He said it was his coat.
Mom looked at me and said, "Noelle, it's probably not your coat."
I could prove it and told Mom as much.
Inside one of the sleeves was a string that had come loose.
And I had tied that string into tiny little knots.
Mom asked the boy to take the coat off, and after a close inspection, she found the string, with the tiny little knots.

We took the coat home and washed it to try and get the smell of smoke out of it.
(Because the boy smoked.)
The smoke smell never faded completely and I didn't like wearing the coat after that.
BUT...
I had learned an incredible lesson.
I knew that God heard and answered prayers.
And for a long time, there was nothing that could shake my faith.

Maybe I needed this reminder today.
Maybe that's why the story came to my mind.
God still hears and answers my prayers.
Those prayers are more complex now...and I'm required to have a lot more faith to believe that somehow God will work everything out...
But He will work it out.
In His own way and His own time.
And that's enough for me.

12 comments:

Today's Gift said...

Noelle, I like your blog. And I really like this story. I needed to hear it today. Thank you.

Too bad you don't live closer so we could be friends in real life.

cfoxes33 said...

Great story, Noelle.

~ Darla ~ said...

Found your blog at My Big Secret Blog and I was hooked as soon as I saw the name of it. Yes, Nice Does Matter. I love it. I'll have to read some of your other posts. I really liked your story. You may think this is strange, but I always had everything (pretty much) that I wanted, clothes, etc. And I was never really thrilled over anything. At times in my life I have heard stories, such as yours, and I wish that I could go back and give my new clothes to someone who would really appreciate them. But I can't, so I just do the best I can helping people now. Crazy, again - but I wish I had actually gone through - not tough times, but perhaps not as easy - so that I could really appreciate things. I'm learning now.

Akkila Nellore said...

Dear Noelle

You know what you shared your story with whole world.I did not expect you to remember where I am from. I am Indian. From India which is very much a part of Asia.
But do u also have readers from Arctic and Antarctica

say my hello to my niece/ nephew. Your baby of course :)

Kristin said...

God does answers prayers. I just always have to remind myself that sometimes the answer is "no." (that's the tough part).

BTW, we have Epiphany here too :) It's the day the wise men visited Jesus.

My Big Secret Blog :) said...

Noelle, I loved the dream coming true! God is cool! I like! :) And I am impressed with this tale!

Can I tell you a BIG secret right here? Remember Emily from Japan? Haha! I've got a good memory when to comes to such stuff, I know! :D Japan is in Asia, too! :D :D :D I am sorry I'm laughing! You're mad. I like that my friend doesn't know her Geography. We match! :)

Somebody get that furnace fixed! No, my preg friend CANNOT be an icecube. Manda Platt, rescue this girl asap!!

p.s. Will you draw on Friday?? Say yes! You can cheat and make the whole world draw a little too.

p.p.s. no MS. NO! Big NO! Because I'm praying.

Lucas Family said...

Great story! Yes I know Brent Olsen. We actually went to middle school together and had the same piano teacher. (So did his twin brother Bart). I have some great memories and photos of Jason at college if you ever need some blackmail :) Ask him about the indelible marker war...

Venassa said...

Wow.. I'm not that much of a believer, but that's an incredible story.

Shan said...

Bittersweet about the coat. I had a car that was stolen and taken on a high speed chase (funny since it was an '81 Tercel). The police recovered it after it was banged into someone's living room wall in the middle of the night. It never exactly felt like *my* car after that.

About MS... if, perchance, that were ever to be true I will want to share scads and scads of wonderful stories about my father-in-law with you. He's truly a fabulous human being who has MS. It does not have him.

Hugs,

Shan :+)

Lalis said...

I loved that story Noelle... :) Especially the difference in the wording of the prayer that made the difference. Thank you for sharing.

Loralee and the gang... said...

That really touched my soul - and I don't usually say things like that.
It reminded me of the faith that I have always had, but has been bogged down by fear and despair. Your story really lifted me up!

jayayceeblog said...

Stories of faith are always so amazing ... thanks for sharing!