It started with a rock. Not just any rock. This one was a painted rock. Someone had painted a flower on a rock and left it near a walking trail.
And she found it while walking that trail. It made her day!
A message on the back asked that she post a picture of the rock in a Facebook group. Which she did. And when she did, she discovered that there were many, many painted rocks being hid and found all over the city.
So she began looking. But no matter how hard she looked, she couldn’t find one. Not one in an entire year. She gave up.
But then one day, when she least expected it, there was another rock near her walking trail. On it was a message that she knew came straight to her from God. She hugged it to herself and continued on her walk.
Surprise! She found another rock. With another awesome message that lightened her heart even more.
By the end of her walk, she had found four rocks!
Now she knew she was supposed to rehide those rocks somewhere else so that other people would have the joy of finding them, too. But she also knew there was no way she would give up those special rocks.
The next time she took a walk, she found several more rocks. And kept those, too. But along with the joy of finding, a little touch of guilt began to creep in. If she was finding and keeping all the rocks, then what would other people be able to find?
She could rehide them.
Nope, that wasn’t going to happen. Each time she looked at them, she felt the same joy that she had felt when she first found them. How could she give them up?
She could squash the guilt. After all, the rocks were there to be found. Right?
Only she began to feel like Scrooge hoarding his gold.
So what could she do?
She could paint her own rocks to hide! Then each time she found one, she could replace it with one of hers so she wouldn’t be stealing anyone else’s joy.
She began with simple designs such as ladybugs, the beach, hearts, and flowers. But then she discovered paint pens!
Now she could easily write messages on the rocks like those first ones she had found. Now just any messages though. She would write motivational messages to hide in her devastated town to hopefully make the finder’s day a little brighter.
And so she began painting and writing. And hiding. And as she hid, she hunted.
And she discovered the birth of a new ministry. One of encouraging others when they least expected it. And leaving certain rocks in certain areas as she felt God leading her.
And she discovered something else. She discovered that she couldn’t out-give God. The more rocks she hid, the more rocks she began to find!
And that’s how she got involved in both a new ministry and a new hobby.
The most amazing part? It got her mind totally off the depressing devastation around her in an inexpensive, stress relieving, life giving way!