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What Would You Do If You Found $45,000?

Searching for a home for his family, a man felt inexplicably drawn to one house. He soon found out why.

This week’s Mysterious Ways in the news comes from Bountiful, Utah, where one man certainly made a bountiful discovery.

The Deseret News reported that their graphic artist, Josh Ferrin, was searching for a home for his family—his wife and two young sons.

At the same time, Dennis Bangerter was looking to sell his parents’ former home. His mom had passed away years ago. His father had died just months earlier. Dennis hoped he could find the right family to occupy the home his parents had loved for decades.

Josh and his wife had already seen two houses they were strongly considering. Then they came to Dennis’s parents’ former home.

The red-brick rambler was a fixer-upper, to be sure. It was in desperate need of remodeling. But there was something about the house that drew Josh in. Was it the giant sequoia redwood tree in the backyard? All Josh knew was that he felt guided to the place.

It was settled. Josh decided to buy it. He and his family met with Dennis. The moment Dennis met them, he felt sure the Ferrins were the family he’d been looking for. He signed the house over to Josh.

Within the hour, Josh took the keys and visited his new home. He entered the garage, looking around. At the back of the garage was a workshop. Josh stepped inside. Something on the ceiling caught his eye—a scrap of carpet peeking out of a crawl space door. He hadn’t noticed it earlier.

Josh got a ladder, moved it into place, climbed up and opened the door. Instantly, he was hit with a musty odor. It seemed no one had opened up the space in ages.

It was dark inside, but Josh could just make out some metal boxes. He pulled one out. It was heavy, an old army ammunition box. He carried it down the ladder, blew off the dust and opened it.

Inside was money. A lot of it, rolled into bundles, tightly tied with pieces of twine. As well as coins, old stamps, bond certificates and memorabilia.

Josh headed back to the crawl space and lugged down seven more boxes. Each one held more of the same.

He quickly called his wife, and together with the kids, they counted up the money. More than $45,000. Plenty of money to help renovate their new home.

The kids were excited, trying to sneak some of the old coins into their pockets. But Josh stopped them. This money doesn’t belong to us, he explained to the boys.

Josh called Dennis.

Dennis was thrilled at the find. He knew his father, a child of the Great Depression, had saved money for years, but Dennis never knew he’d saved so much. The memorabilia provided a glimpse into his father’s life he hadn’t had before, and gave him and his five siblings a measure of comfort now that both of their parents were gone.

How many people would have returned such a discovery? Dennis had found the right family all right—a family his parents would have been proud to leave their home to.

Have you ever discovered something that had been hidden or lost by someone else? What did you do?

Also, check out this blog entry by Lori Durham, one of our recent Guideposts “workshoppers” (what we call our Writers Workshop winners). Was her experience merely a coincidence? Or a remarkable response to prayer?

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