(Post #4 in a 4-part series collaboration)
By David Goodman (bio below)
A few months ago, in remarkably certain terms, God showed me that I’m known to Him. Therefore, when Pastor Gregory invited me to write an article for a series he was calling Known, I was excited for the opportunity.
My story starts in early September. Something seemed wrong as I was getting ready for work. My necklace felt lighter. I hadn’t put my shirt on yet and when I looked down, I didn’t see the religious amulet my wife bought me sixteen years ago. The clasp on my necklace was closed, and it functioned properly.
How then did I lose the amulet?
I looked everywhere for the amulet. I guess I was hoping for a small miracle, so I checked the trunk of my car, inside the refrigerator, on bookshelves. Finally, I admitted to myself that I was not going to find the amulet.
Several weeks went by. In early October, my daughter was in town. She goes to school in Tampa. We landed on the topic of God’s existence because lately her faith has been very shaky. We recently moved to Sarasota from Milwaukee, and she was struggling with the transition. It hurt to see how sad she looked.
I don’t ask God for help too often. I have always assumed that He knows what I need. But when I worked out later that day, I asked God to show me He exists.
I’m a swimmer. I count each stroke because it helps me stay focused on my pace. On this day, I replaced counting with a prayer: “Please God, show me that you exist.” Each syllable for each stroke.
About 45 minutes later, after I had repeated my prayer more than 200 times, I was nearly done swimming when a shiny object caught my eye. Without thinking, I reached for my neck. Nothing there. Quickly I returned to the other side of the pool. I dove down and grabbed my necklace.
I stood in the pool untangling it. Suddenly, part of the clasp broke off. I cupped my hand to catch the tiny piece of metal as it sank in the water. I swear I had it; but when I opened my hand to place it on the side of the pool for a closer look, my hand was empty.
I stared at the side of the pool. It had to be there. Then another object caught my eye. I reached for it without thinking. It took a few seconds to grasp the inconceivable. That I was holding the amulet I had lost weeks ago.
I left the pool. I was walking to the locker room. “Thank you, God,” came to my lips.
About a month later, while driving my daughter and son to a movie, I told them about my experience. They were fascinated and heartened by my story.
I dropped them off and, as I drove away, I saw them in my rear-view mirror for a moment, both smiling before disappearing into a crowd.
Blogger Bio: David J. Goodman earned both a PhD and Master of Education in psychology from Loyola University of Chicago (1994) and Indiana University (1989), respectively. He started his professional career in 1992 with the Chicago Public School System as a certified school psychologist. His clinical training continued in 1994, when he took a post-doctoral residency on a children’s inpatient floor at Saint Therese Medical Center in Waukegan, IL. During the next 25 years, half of which Dr. Goodman spent as a Wisconsin licensed psychologist, he served individuals and families in medical rehab, skilled nursing, community mental health, and private practice.