Todayâ€™s post,Â â€œThe Present”, is from one of my favorite blogger friends, Carol Peterson. Carol is a writer with a heart for encouragement, sharing parables of faith at her blog for kids, readers and writers as well.
The first thing I do when I receive a gift is to hold it. I stroke the paper, twiddle with the ribbon, even adjust the card slipped under the bow, making sure it sits perfectly on the packageâ€”just to enjoy the moment, the love behind the gift and the wonderful possibilities it contains.
I slide out the envelope, noticing the writing on the front and whether the person had added a whimsical heart or flower to express their affection. Or just to make me smile.
I turn the envelope over. Is there a sticker or a smiley face on the flap? Or perhaps a lipstick mark, if itâ€™s from Mom?
I slide my finger inside the flap and gently tug, careful not to destroy the envelope in my excitement. Out slips the card. I smile, noticing how the personality of the giver is reflected in her selection of the card; how the words evoke her feelings and relate to what she knows about me. Her personal words inside add to the delight, bringing with the printed words a part of her heart for me.
I set the card aside and tug at the ribbon. I watch the loop of the bow slither smaller, until it disappears and transforms into a single ribbon. I release the ribbon and watch as it curls into a tendril, bouncing happily up and down; up and down, as if it, too, delights in anticipation of the joy to follow.
As my hands smooth across the wrapping, I notice the colors and texture of the paperâ€”silky or rough; cool or crinkly. My fingers find the edges where the tapeâ€”nearly invisibleâ€”has clasped them together, delicately attempting to delay my delight. I pull and the paper falls away.
The box sometimes has words on it, used for another purpose perhaps. Sometimes it is misshapen or tattered. Sometimes it is new and clean. But it is always beautiful, because it contains the giftâ€” the precious thing my loved one has picked out and presented to me.
I lift the lid, flick away the frothy tissue andâ€¦
â€¦oh! Thank you! Itâ€™s wonderful!
This is how I want to live my life for Jesus. This is how I want to experience every moment of every day. This is how I want to anticipate the ultimate gift Jesus has for meâ€”the precious gift of eternity.
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank you for the greatest gift we will ever receiveâ€”spending eternity with you. Thank you for this life here on earth also. Please show us how to fully appreciate these moments in a way that reflects your love for us and our love for you. Amen.
It’s always such a treat to hang out here, Chris. Thanks for the opportunity!
You’re always welcome here Carol and I really appreciate you sharing this!
Love the thought of “the love behind the gift” – that just warms my heart! This message just keeps drawing me in, I think I’ll read it again and again… 🙂
Carol – my heart is still racing! How beautifully you described in slow motion opening a wonderful gift. I agree that each day is a gift from God – each day has it’s moments, but ultimately we are closer to eternity with the Lord than yesterday. Every moment brings us closer to those precious targets of fulfilling our purpose bringing glory, honor and praise to the Lord.
-Chris thank you for hosting our precious Carol – she indeed is our treasure!
Wow Carol, you described someone who loves to savor opening a gift. I guess I’m a bit different where I love to rip into the wrapping and dive into the gift. Not that either way of enjoying the experience is wrong, just different.
And your way of doing it resonates with the book The In-Between. In it, it’s shared that we should be willing to slow down, savor the slow times, and enjoy them. Maybe the next time I receive a gift, I’ll slow down and savor the unwrapping.