long walk part of gift

This story is dedicated to my friends who are fabulous women and teach me life lessons whenever we talk. Most of my friends are grandmas now, and I love hearing about the things they do as they 'grandparent' their kids' kids. (I have to add that we all LOVE the grandma experience, but we sure don't look or feel like grandmas lol.) Christmas can be especially fun, but also exhausting. The following story reminds me that everything we do - the preparations, the cooking, the shopping, the efforts to make things special, the tending, the cleaning, the unconditional loving...are all gifts that we give. This story was part of an article by Norman Vincent Peale that Norma and I used years ago in our Christmas workshops - the message has always touched my heart.

Long Walk Part of Gift

An African boy listened carefully as his teacher explained why Christians were such giving people. The teacher said, “Jesus taught us that giving gifts is an expression of our love and friendship for Him and each other. Jesus said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” (Acts 20:35).

A couple of days later the boy brought the teacher a seashell of lustrous beauty. “Where did you ever find such a beautiful shell?” the teacher asked. The youth told her that there was only one spot where such extraordinary shells could be found.

When he named the place, a certain bay several miles away, the teacher was speechless. She knew that it would have taken the young man hours to walk to the bay. Also, he would have faced many dangers from the jungle and rocky cliffs of the seacoast along the way. “Why, it’s gorgeous and wonderful, but you shouldn’t have gone all that way to get the gift for me,” the teacher joyfully explained.

His eyes brightening, the boy answered, “Long walk part of gift.”