It was the time for gift giving this past December. Our children, their spouses, our grandchildren, Donna, and I were all assembled for the yearly ritual.
As you might expect, the grandchildren were especially excited. That just seems to come with the territory when young children are involved.
However, this time there was something different about the excitement. To be sure, one of our granddaughters was excited about the gifts she might (and did) receive. She was also excited, though, about the fact that she had found gifts to give to the other family members.
We found out later that she did a lot of her “shopping” around the house in which she and the rest of the family live. Her mother told us that she had to step in and “supervise” so that some valuable and useful things weren’t given away.
Finally, it was my turn to open my present! I’ve told people repeatedly that they’ve never seen something exactly like the gift I received. I carry it with me most of the time.
What I received is a combination ballpoint pen and stylus. It is a ballpoint pen on one end and a stylus for a tablet on the other.
Again, before you say that you’ve seen something just like this or before you say that you own one (or several) like this, I need to let you know why I don’t think that is true. You have not seen one that has the story behind it that this one does.
You see, when I opened the present and saw what I had received, I thanked my granddaughter. I’m sure every grandparent would do exactly that. That would not be unusual.
What was unusual was her response. She seemed very proud of herself and very satisfied that I liked her gift as she said:
“You’re welcome, Grampy. It didn’t work on my tablet.”
As I joined the other members of our family in laughter, my mind was racing in several different directions. One of those directions has to do with the openness and honesty of children. There is something refreshing about the fact that they haven’t quite mastered tactfulness, political correctness, etc.
I also thought about the concept of “payback.” As our daughter tried to “make the situation better,” I thought of an incident that happened when she was even younger than our granddaughter is now. We had a couple of elderly ladies in our home for a meal. During the meal – and for no apparent reason – our daughter said, “You two sure are old, aren’t you?”
There was a kind of perverse satisfaction on my part that she was now the one dealing with something like this. As they say – what goes around comes around.
On a much more serious note, though, one of the directions in which my mind went had to do with how God views what I give Him. When it comes to my time, my energy, my financial resources, etc. do I offer to him only what is left over or what won’t work for me?
If that is what I do, I need to spend a lot more time in studying and meditating on the Word of God. If I will do that, I will find that I am wasting my time.
God expects and deserves to be first in our hearts and lives. He expects and deserves and to receive only the best of what I have to offer. Anything else is unacceptable to Him.
I’m hoping that this somewhat humorous incident that occurred in our family will cause all of us to do serious soul-searching. I know it has caused this “Grampy” to do that.
By the way; the answer is “no.” The stylus does not work on my tablet.
I carry it anyway. It is a reminder to me that somebody very special to me did what she could think of to do to try to show me that I am special to her.
I hope the Lord views my feeble attempts to serve Him in the same way.
AUTHOR: Jim Faughn