[ Divine Signs ]

The Cricket

My brother, Gene, and I exchanged glances as the cricket jumped into the open grave. We had just lost our Dad, an avid fisherman, and somehow that little cricket made us smile to ourselves. After the funeral, my brother and I agreed that it must have been Daddy's "fishin'" cricket and somehow that gave us comfort.

That was over a year ago. I have been to the cemetery on more occasions than I can count in the last year and I have not seen another cricket. That is, until Tuesday, July 27, 2004, one year to the day when Daddy had his "heavenly homecoming." As I knelt to place flowers on his grave, a cricket jumped across the grave. My first thought was “I cannot wait to tell Gene. This is so cool!”

Gene was working offshore and would not be home until Saturday. I had been under the weather and when he arrived home he called to see how I was feeling. I told him that I was fine and he said, "Well, let me tell you something that will make you feel even better."

He said that he had been offshore on the platform for about a week and a half and that a cricket had been chirping all day and all night. When they would get near the cricket, it would stop chirping.

On Tuesday, July 27th, he said that he again heard the cricket chirping. He moved a box and reached down and just picked the cricket up. The cricket never attempted to flee. He then told me that he put the cricket in a cup with a piece of a potato for food.

When he came home on Saturday morning, he took the cricket and set it free on Dauphin Island. He said, "You know, Daddy always loved the 'Island'." He told me his story before I had even had a chance to share my story with him.

Was it coincidence? I don't think so. I am convinced that God sends us comfort in many ways. We just need to be open to His signs. Our comfort on the first anniversary of our Dad's death was found in something as small as a little cricket. I once saw a sign outside of a church that said, "Coincidence is when God chooses to remain anonymous." I agree.

Shannon N.

Mobile, AL