Penny has Down Syndrome and is a granddaughter of few words. However, she does comprehend what we tell her and is adept at giving us orders. I don’t want her to grow up either.
My son-in-law and I watch over Penny when her mom goes to work as a labor and delivery nurse.
On one such occasion her daddy asked me to keep an eye on Penny while he cleaned the garage. I checked on her every 15 minutes as I went through the house doing various tasks.
Penny followed her usual routine. Early in the day she played with action figures and crayons but as the day wound down, she found her tablet and curled up on a pillow in the bedroom. I could hear her giggling or singing along with her favorite characters.
But after a while I noticed it was too quiet. She wasn’t on the bed, so after a quick look around I asked her dad where she was.
After checking all the back bedrooms, he came out into the kitchen. There was a slight panic in his eyes. He then went to access his security system. The video camera revealed Penny ever so quietly walking out the front door. She walked to the end of the driveway, and after turning to see if anyone had followed, she disappeared into the dusk. Twenty-five minutes had elapsed before we viewed the security footage.
Heart pounding, I grabbed my car keys. Robert told me to check the new park while he called the police.
Ten minutes later I drove back home without Penny. Full blown panic ensued. Robert took off in his truck and I began a fresh search of the back yard; still no Penny.
Dear Lord, please bring her home. Dear Father, protect her and keep her safe.
Completely drained and afraid, I returned to the front porch. Then a Bible verse popped into my head. “The Lord inhabits our praises.”
My prayer changed to: I praise you Lord for your love. I praise you for bringing Penny home.
Two seconds later I heard a child’s voice. I turned to see a little head bobbing above the rose hedge.
Penny leaped into the air, hands raised and shouted, “Hi, GG!”
She ran to me and gave me a big hug before merrily running into the house.
As it turned out, Penny wanted to visit the new park. A lady named Maria noticed that she was alone and called the police. She was still talking with them as she followed Penny home. They all got to hear me burst into tears as I thanked Maria from the bottom of my heart.
The Bible verse was from Psalms 22:3: “But thou art holy, O thou that inhabits the praises of Israel.”
Penny had a guardian angel that night. God’s very real presence in that moment of fear was a reminder to always trust Him.
God is good and watches over us all. I am grateful beyond description that He takes over when we fail.
Sharon Wible writes from Southern California.
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