Wednesday, February 11, 2009

True Gift

This is an account of my efforts to put into action what I learn while reading the Bible, an account of my journey to become closer to God.

This story, taken from my book “Mom’s Little Angel” which was released on Tuesday, is called A True Gift and is found on page 113:

Although Penny obediently endured what she believed were the most boring Sunday School lessons ever, she often tuned out the finer details of the lessons and thought instead of the coming summer and the goings on among her eighth grade classmates.

In spite of her best poker face, the Sunday School teacher always saw through Penny’s feigned interest. Anita, the teacher, knew her daughter well and little escaped her observation. That is why whenever she could she brought the most recent Bible lesson into the real life of her family, demonstrating through her actions what she believed Jesus would do in a similar situation.

Yet, in spite of her mother’s uncanny ability to find a perfect opportunity to practice what had been preached, Penny was never moved as greatly by her mother’s example as had been hoped. More than once Anita was disappointed by her daughter’s failure to remember to give a portion of her monthly allowance when the offering basket was passed among the pews.

It was springtime and Penny had been saving most of her allowance to purchase something special for her mother on Mother’s Day. Although she knew her mom was disappointed that she gave so little of her allowance to the church, she was certain that would be forgotten when the gift she planned to purchase with her savings was presented. Her excitement grew as the special day neared, anticipating her mother’s delight at the gift she would soon receive.

The day of the shopping trip came and they took the train into the city. Anita loved to take the train. To her it was another chance to meet interesting people, maybe even make a new friend. More often than not when the train arrived at their planned stop, Anita and some person, who minutes before had been a total stranger, would be laughing and talking as if they had known each other all of their lives.

On this day Anita and Penny sat directly across from two women, a middle-aged daughter and her elderly mother. It didn’t take Anita long to learn that the mother was suffering from dementia and Glenda, the daughter, had recently left her job to care for her mother. They were headed to a clinic where they could buy medications at a discount. Even then, Glenda confided, the cost still presented a real hardship.

As the train approached the station nearest the clinic, Glenda and her mother prepared to depart. Anita turned to Penny and whispered, “I know what I want for Mother’s Day.”

“I’ve already picked something out,” Penny said, excited her plan was nearing the moment when it would come to light.

“Penny, it is better to give than to receive. If you would let me give the money you’ve saved for my present to these people, it would be better than anything you could buy for me.”

“But Mom….”

“It will mean so much to me, Penny, and even more to them.”

Reluctantly Penny reached in her jeans pocket, pulled out a few folded bills and handed them to her mother. When the train stopped Anita stood and reached for her new friend’s hand. “My daughter and I want to give this to you,” she said.

Glenda burst into tears when she looked into her palm. “I can’t take this,” she said.

Penny looked up at her mom; she was crying too. Something about the expression in her mother’s eyes and the smile on her face suddenly spoke to the adolescent. She finally heard what her mother had been trying to teach her. “Yes you can,” she said, turning to Glenda, “it is our gift to you.”

Tune in tomorrow for “A Dream Come True.”

Well, I guess that’s enough for today. Thanks so much for visiting my blog, and please pray for me and my family. Now go out and hug somebody!

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