John and the Magic Penny

I'd like to share with you a little story, Malcolm.

When I was a little boy, I was scared to death of speaking in front of people. My knees would go weak, my arms would shake, and when I opened my mouth, nothing would come out.

One day, I was to recite a poem before my class. As usual, the night before, I was jittery. I knew that I couldn't do it. When my father tucked me into bed, he said, "John, I have something for you."

Being a greedy little four year old, of course I asked, "What?"

"A magic penny," he said. "Santa Claus gave me this penny to give to you."

"Magic?" I asked, my eyes round. "What does it do?"

"Well, it gives you the power to not be afraid. When you've got this penny, you won't be afraid to stand up and speak your mind."

And with that, he slipped the penny into the pocket of my pants.

The next day, I was much more excited than nervous. I didn't have anything to be afraid of, since I had that magic penny. During recess, I took it out and looked at it, wondering at the feelings of power and courage just oozing from the copper.

I recited the poem that day, without making any mistakes at all. I didn't even stutter or shake.

But when I sat down and stuck my hand in my pocket, it was empty. I'd left my magic penny out on the playground.

You've got more power than you think. Your magic penny is God.


Go Back to Shy David's Religion Page.