Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Gift

Yesterday started off like any other ordinary day.  I went to see my parents and had a pleasant visit.  As I was leaving.....  a little girl came running up the drive shouting "Sweet corn!  Sweet corn!  Free! Sweet corn!".  I had just purchased several ears of corn the day before and didn't need any more.  She was so cute and so insistent that I obliged her.  As she was bagging up the corn.....  I told her that I didn't need the bag....  I would just take the corn.  She told me that I must take the bag, too!  She went skipping on about her way and I headed off.  When I arrived home and opened the bag.....  I found "this" inside.  
I would have missed out if I hadn't taken the bag, too.

     A wealthy man and his son loved to collect rare works of art.  They had everything in their collection, from Picasso to Raphael.  They would often sit together and admire the great works of art.  When the Vietnam conflict broke out, the son went to war.  He was very courageous and died in battle while rescuing another soldier.  The father was notified and grieved deeply for his only son.
     About a month later, just before Christmas, there was a knock at the door.  A young man stood at the door with a large package in his hands.  He said, "Sir, you don't know me, but I am the soldier for whom your son gave his life.  He saved many lives that day, and he was carrying me to safety when a bullet struck him in the heart.  He died instantly.  He often talked about you, and his love for art.  The young man held out his package.  "I know this isn't much.  I'm not really a great artist, but I think your son would have wanted you to have this".  The father opened the package.  It was a portrait of his son, painted by the young man.  He stared in awe at the way the soldier had captured the personality of his son in the painting.  The father was so drawn to the eyes that his own eyes welled up with tears.  He thanked the young man and offered to pay him for the painting.  "Oh, no sir.  I could never repay what your son did for me.  It's a gift".
     The father hung the portrait over the mantle.  Every time visitors came to his home he took them to see the portrait of his son before he showed them any of the other great works he had collected.  The man died a few months later.  There was to be a great auction of his paintings.  Many influential people gathered, excited over seeing the great paintings and having an opportunity to purchase one of them for their collection.  On the platform sat the painting of the son.  The auctioneer pounded his gavel.  "We will start the bidding with this picture of the son.  Who will bid for this picture"?  There was silence.  Then a voice from the back shouted, "We want to see the famous paintings.  Skip this one".  But the auctioneer persisted.  "Who will start the bidding?  $100?  $200?  Will someone bid for this painting"?  Another voice shouted angrily, "We didn't come to see this painting.  We came to see the Van Gogh's, the Rembrandt's.  Get on with the real bids"!  But still the auctioneer continued.  "The son!  The son!  Who will take the son"?
     Finally, a voice from the very back of the room.  It was the long-time gardener of the man and his son.  "I will give $10 for the painting".  Being a poor man, it was all he could afford.  "We have $10, who will bid $20"?  "Give it to him for $10.  Let's see the masters"!  "$10 is the bid, won't someone bid $20"?  The crowd was becoming angry.  They didn't want the picture of the son.  They wanted the more worthy investments for their collections.  The auctioneer pounded his gavel.  "Going once, going twice, SOLD for $10"!  A man sitting on the second row shouted, "Now let's get on with the auction"!  The auctioneer laid down his gavel.  "I'm sorry, the auction is over".  "What about the paintings"?  "I am sorry.  When I was called to conduct this auction, I was told of a secret stipulation in the will.  I was not allowed to reveal the stipulation until now.  Only the painting of the son would be auctioned.  Whoever bought the painting of the son would also inherit the entire estate, including the paintings.  The man who took the son gets everything"!
     2000 years ago God sent His only son Jesus to take upon himself the cruel punishment which should have been ours.  All of us have, at one time or another offended God through our thoughts, deeds or spoken words.  Through Jesus death and resurrection our sins can be forgiven when we receive Him into our lives!  Much like the auctioneer, His message to you today is, "The son, the son, who will take the son"?  Because you see, whoever takes the Son....  gets everything!

Later that afternoon......  I received a phone call.  The call was actually for my husband who wasn't home yet.  It was a young man that my husband has been trying to help (mentor) for some time now.  He sounded so disappointed and very low.  I told him to call back later when my husband was home and that I would pray for him.  The man said he didn't know if he believed in God and if he did....  God hadn't done anything for him.  Not knowing him myself.....  I struggled to find the right words.  Then I thought......  the poem!  the poem!.  By the time I had finished reading the poem he was weeping.  It had opened up his heart.  

Thank you!  little one....  whoever you are..... 
for the sweet corn and for the "gift".

Linking with
Fishtail Cottage for Cottage Garden Party
A Delightsome Life for Home and Garden Thursday
No Minimalist Here for Open House Party
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Common Ground for Be Inspired Friday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Rooted In Thyme for Simple & Sweet Fridays
My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Nifty Thrifty Things for Nifty Thrifty Sunday


Michele @ The Nest at Finch Rest said...

I am actually bawling my eyes out right now.

This was so amazingly awesome.

I thank you from the deepest part of my soul for sharing this with us today - I needed it, I really and truly needed it.

living from glory to glory said...

Dear Elizabeth, God does work in all things, "Corn Sweet Corn"
Timing in the Spirit is perfect, who would of known what the bag really held!!
I am touched deeply because we always think something else is more valuable and it is really all in the bag :)
Your a very treasured friend!
Blessings Always, Roxy

Debbie said...

Praise be to God!
Thank you for sharing this today, Elizabeth.

Linda Bouffard said...

How beautiful! Thanks for sharing this. Your friend, Linda

Kathy A Delightsome Life said...

What a delightful find with your corn! The story brought a tear and and a lump to my throat - I am going to share it with Dearest - marvelous story!
I am delighted that you shared with Home and Garden Thursday,