Friday, November 2, 2007

The Gift of Giving

A Favorite Doll, originally uploaded by bluebirdsandteapots.

When I was a little girl my mother was given a doll to dress for an orphanage at Christmas. She made all of the clothes and a little fur muff. I thought it was the most beautiful doll I had ever seen. I was just four years old, we lived in Queens, New York with my grandparents. Both my mother and father worked, and I stayed with my grandmother. I went to Public School #58 with my Uncle Bobby who was just two years older. We were not poor, because my parents both worked and so did my grandfather. yet we lived very modestly. Bobby and I had nice clothes, plenty to eat and many toys.

The most important life lesson that I learned was on the day that my mother returned from work carrying a beautiful doll. It seemed that her employer had received dolls for a nearby orphanage every year. Every employee was asked to take one home and make doll clothes and dress the doll to be given away.

I watched day after day as my mother carefully made her clothes and even a little fur stole for the doll. When she was finished the doll looked more beautiful than any doll that I had ever seen. Of course the notion that the clothes had been made by my mother made her seem even lovelier to me. I wanted that doll so much, but I trusted that I would have one just like her some day.

My mother had carefully explained to me where the doll was going. It was the first time I recall understanding from my heart instead of my head. I learned from that gesture of kindness that we are required by God to provide for the less fortunate. That doll paved the way for me to continue to give to the poor as a natural way of life. I trusted my mother so much, that I didn’t worry that I would not receive...I trusted her. I believe that these lessons created fertile ground for the day to come when as a young woman I would give my heart to Jesus Christ.

On my eighth birthday my mother and father gave me the most wonderful gift. It was December and my baby sister was due to arrive soon. I sat in the car with my Dad staring at the birthday gift for me sitting next to me. This rather large box wrapped beautifully entriged me, I couldn't even imagine what was inside. We were waiting for my Mom to come out of the doctor's office. As soon as she got into the car my Dad said "Okay Karen you can open your gift now." I opened up this large box only to find a beatuful Revlon Doll.

I was thrilled because she wore stockings and high heel shoes. She looked just like the doll my mother had provided for the orphan all those years ago. She wore a pink organza dress with red hearts and she had real earrings and a pearl necklace. This doll meant more to me than any other gift that I received that year and during the many years to come. In my little girl heart I believed that I had received God’s best as a result of my being a cheerful giver and not begrudging an orphan for receiving my mother’s best.

Looking back I realize that on that day I learned about God’s timing. You see, my mother was pregnant with my sister Susan. Up until then I had been an only child. When I received such a meaningful gift on that particular birthday, I was reminded that I can trust. I welcomed my baby sister into the world five days later. Being reminded that God is faithful helped me to love my baby sister and not to be worried that I would have to share my lovely mom.

We can never out give God. He always stands waiting with open arms to give to us what we lack. Like a smiling parent overlooking an obedient child wanting to reward their good behavior. In his perfect timing He will give us our heart’s desire. God wants to give us His favor for being obedient to His word and being a cheerful giver.

“Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctant or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” Corinthians 9:7


bj said...

What a lovely story...thank you for sharing.
I love this beautiful blog of yours and will be back soon to read more.

MARIA said...

I was touched reading your childhood, wonderful story. Thank you so much for sharing.

God bless your work!

myletterstoemily said...

this is such a gift to read these precious
memories recorded so beautifully.

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Buss Roper said...

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