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What do you do with a good gift?

Updated on September 13, 2015

Lost Opened Gifts


Open, ooo! and awww!

No matter what the gift was,

Grammy saved them up.


On shelves high they stayed.

Pristine, new, all gifts of love.

Admired only once?


I never saw them.

She aged, grew old, and fell ill.

The gifts? Up in flames.


What were they saved for?

My father never told her.

The gifts were all gone.


It seemed such a waste.

Surely she knew her reasons.

Was love stored there?

____________


A House of The Lord

Source

Lessons from a pair of Christmas shoes....

The young newlyweds were making meager funds meet their essential needs.

There would be no presents for Christmas. They had agreed.

Yet the young husband had scrimped and saved. He put a little more money aside each time he noticed his sweetheart's tattered shoes.

When Christmas Day came she found he had broken their agreement, for he presented her with a sturdy pair of brown, working shoes to protect her feet, while expressing his love by his act of protection.

She, on the other hand, consoled herself that she had purchased no gift for him due to their agreement. And, besides, the shoes seemed ugly to her, and definitely not a pair she would have purchased for herself with their precious funds.

She kept the sales slip, and the first thing the next morning she returned the shoes for a pair that were more to her liking, if perhaps somewhat less sturdy and durable.

The replacement of his gift was not as serious as its seeming rejection, for it represented his love and serious intent to serve her very real need going forward.

Weeks later, and weeks wiser, she regretted her impulse and the evident rejection of his taste in shoes. She realized too late that she had received more than just a gift of shoes that Christmas Day, a day wrongly clouded with her former thoughts.

A happy marriage with children and that same faithful, devoted husband later, this one time newlywed had become the head of the oldest women's organization in the world, and for what must have been only one of many such times, she again publicly repented of her failure to understand the true significance of that pair of sturdy, brown shoes.

Since that first Christmas Day of their marriage, she had come to understand that there is often much more to a gift than just its value to others, and that that particular gift also had much more value and meaning than what the sales receipt had shown.

In the lives of so many the gift of the Sabbath is like such a gift, one to be cherished and honored for both the gift and the giver. Cherished for its true significance, not something to be merely placed on a high shelf to gather dust with other unused presents.

My grandmother seldom dressed up. Her everyday dress was a simple dress and a fresh apron. By the end of her day, that apron and parts of the simple dress were a road map of her service to others that day.

She did dress up to go to church services, even if they were only held in someone else's home. She would also dress up for funerals and weddings.

Dressing up for church services was her way, hat. gloves, and all, to give respect to God on the Sabbath.

Dressing up for funerals and weddings was her way to give respect to the dead and to the new couple just starting out as she had once done..

Her "road map apron" was what I understood as the best mental symbol she left me as to how she lived and embodied her respect for God's other commandments.

We might do worse than to ask ourselves how we live so as to show our own appreciation for the many and wondrous gifts we have been given.

____________

© 2015 Demas W. Jasper All right reserved.

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    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      teaches12345 - Just noticed your nice note. I'm pleased this brought back the same visual nostalgia images for you, too.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      4 years ago

      Oh what a sweet memory that road map apron is to me also. I remember my mother wearing an apron at home, special ones when we had guests. It was a reminder of her gift of hospitality and serving others. I enjoyed your article.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Deb,

      Having a goal and furthering your accomplishment of that goal has to be a joy, at least the closer you come to accomplishing the goal.

      I guess that mine is to share whatever I think I understand to be important for this world going forward.

      It doesn't seem to accomplish that by simply stating something is important.

      So, perhaps, I will resort to stories to illustrate such points in a less direct way.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      And I am thankful each day for the gifts that I have been given: my free-flow writing, photography, and the great appreciation for life and the outdoors. In turn, I must protect all the creatures on he earth and deliver my messages to all who will listen.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Audrey, We can learn a lot from those who have been here longer than we have. May you radiate love and happiness too, at age 93....just as I believe you do now.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      4 years ago from California

      This made me think about my mother in law--the most loving and giving woman I think I have ever known---she radiates love and happiness at 93 and I suspect has done so most of her life

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      May God continue to bless you, too, Dana. And He is my God, too.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      My God continue to bless you, too, Dana.

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 

      4 years ago from LOS ANGELES

      I will do that and thank you for that suggestion. God bless.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Dana Tate Might I make a suggestion? Contact your cousins and suggest that they send you (or the person doing your family's genealogy) a life sketch (brief, short, or long) of their parents. I am in that process and hope that it can add to what my descendants can learn about my aunts and uncles. [My mother was the 13th and last child in her family.]

      Thanks for taking a moment to comment on this Hub.

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 

      4 years ago from LOS ANGELES

      Your grandmother sounded like a God- fearing woman with a beautiful heart. Sometimes we forget that sainthood means servitude. Thank you for sharing your amazing grandmother.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      My grandmother Rosa Jasper was one of those quiet saints who put in the seemingly endless and seemingly boring days, weeks, months, and years serving others by using her kitchen and her home to create a loving home for her family (including two grown sons who did their part, just as she did hers.)

      I know she had faith in God and His Son, but it was a quiet, solid faith she expressed by her service to others year after year, after year, following he husband's death from heart failure some 20 years before she died.

      There were always fresh biscuits, preserves, canned vegetables, and three full meals each day with meat courses. Her sons provided for her, and she provided without complaint for them. That is who she was, until the days came when she could do it no more.

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