DANNY WANTED TO SEND a book to Colleen before he died. Tragically, his desires were unmet. Discover how God intervened.Could this account be more than a coincidence? Allow me to explain. Danny was a well-liked man. He played guitar with a passion in church. He was also outgoing and warm and loved to talk about the Lord. He had a hug for everybody.
His friends were shocked when Danny announced that he and his wife were separated. Later, friends were equally surprised when Danny stated they were getting a divorce. Danny always spoke with love and respect when he mentioned Colleen. It was obvious he still cared for her very deeply.
A few years later Danny told us he had a form of cancer that was exacerbated by his diabetes. He was seeing various doctors and an herbalist. With his family torn apart, Danny decided to move to New Jersey to be near his mother and brother. His aunt had a room where he could stay.
Wanting to give Danny something I had created, I sent him a copy of Woodcutter’s Revival. It contained some information and anecdotes we discussed in Bible studies and in prayer groups. A few months later, he came back to Indiana to visit. He thanked me for the book and told me he liked Sven best of all the characters. He also told me he didn’t like some of the politics mentioned in the book. Danny was nothing if not honest.
Tragically, later that same year, Danny died. When it came time for his memorial service in his home town, sadly the announcement was not made public. Old Bible study cronies/buddies/sisters and brothers missed out.
Just recently, I was looking in Amazon.com to see how my book sales were doing and if any recent reviews were posted. I decided to do something I had only done once previously. I checked the used books. There was a book listed in the New Jersey – Philadelphia Goodwill. The description stated, “Used, in good condition – A personal inscription inside the front cover.”
I was intrigued. I could only think of one other book I had given to someone in that area. Working with Champions for Today, I met William Green, former All American college football player. William had also been a running back from the Cleveland Browns and was living in New Jersey. William informed me that he lost his book on a plane and wanted another copy to read as he traveled. I thought, “This must be the book William lost.”
My curiosity got the best of me. I shelled-out the 85 cents and $3.99 postage and handling to determine who had owned the book. A few days later, when the book arrived in the mail, I was deeply moved to find my personal inscription to Danny, dated April 4, 2013. I contacted Colleen to ask if she or one of their children would be interested in obtaining the book.
She told me that Danny had mentioned he wanted to send her a book before he died. The illness moved so fast he was never able to send the mentioned book to her. She could not recall the title. Danny’s apartment had probably been cleaned-out in a hurry, with most things going to Goodwill.
A few days later, Colleen contacted me and said: “Hi Jerry! I got the book yesterday. And…you are the author! Thanks so much for sending it to me. It is an amazing story how it ended up getting into my hands. It IS the book Dan wanted me to read. I remember him talking about Gayle Schloesser endorsing the book. When I read her review of the book I immediately knew it was the book Dan said he was going to send to me. God must really want me to read it (Dan too!) so I look forward to reading it! I know there is something in there I need to hear. Thank you again for finding Dan’s copy and sending it to me!”
I responded, “I didn’t do it. I ordered it out of curiosity. God did it. Making me cry right now! God bless you! ”
I really did get tears in my eyes when I read Colleen’s response. Everybody who heard the story, and knew Danny, also had an emotional response. I asked her if she minded if I shared the story. She readily agreed.
Was this just a coincidence? I think not. A woman named Irene Hannon is credited with saying, “A coincidence is small miracle in which God chooses to remain anonymous.” That’s how I prefer to think about it.
Join the Conversation: Have you experienced a coincidence similar to Jerry’s? Tell us about it in the comment section below.
About Jerry Slauter:
Jerry Slauter is a retired school teacher who loves to spend time with his family, including children and grandchildren. He published Woodcutter’s Revival in 2012 and released the sequel, Fine Line, in 2014. He likes to travel and speak about writing and the topics of his writing and research. He works in his wood, leather and metal shops at home. Writing aligns well with his passion of reading and research. Jerry is available to speak in schools and churches or conferences and seminars. You may contact him at email@example.com or (219)575-9571.
Read more of Jerry Slauter’s articles at FaithWriters.
Receive a “free” Amazon Kindle download of Woodcutter’s Revival and Fine Line September 2nd – 6th, 2016.
Woodcutter’s Revival is a historical fiction novel that takes place in America at the onset of the Industrial Revolution. Through the pages of its story it seeks to demonstrate for the reader how to find peace through faith. The novel also addresses those struggles in life that are universal to all humans such as how we can learn lessons from the past to prevent making the same kind of mistakes. Whether you are searching for your own place in life or just looking for a compelling and insightful read, Woodcutter’s Revival is a highly engaging tale that follows two young men searching for peace and their place in the world. Along with beautiful illustrations by Scott “Doc” Wiley, this Christian book offers the reader the opportunity to think about faith, leadership and the search for God while providing a riveting love story that is spiritual and God centered. According to Wendy Walters, publisher of Palm Tree Productions, “This historical fiction novel, set at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, is a thought-provoking story about life, love and leadership. You will come to admire some characters and despise others. In just a few pages, you will find yourself caught up in the delightful tale.”
Was our nation losing its innocence at the end of the Gilded Age? Fortunes were being made in steel, oil, railroads and banking. Immigrants were streaming in to discover the American Dream. The Foundling Society was taking care of New York City’s children, finding them jobs and providing training or sending them west on orphan trains. Follow the characters as they discern the changing times and attempt to live by faith. As they find love, happiness, purpose and a home, find yourself immersed in this engaging plot as you become endeared to some characters and enraged by others. Discover the fine line between passion and providence, physical, metaphysical and spiritual reality.
If you would like to submit your own Faith Story, contact Sheryl M. Baker at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Slauter, Jerry. "Just a Coincidence?" Faith Writers (www.faithwriters.com), July 25, 2014.