A little girl had been shopping with her Mom in a shopping center. She
must have been 6 years old, this beautiful red haired, freckle faced
image of innocence. It was pouring outside. The kind of rain that
gushes over the top of rain gutters, so much in a hurry to hit the
earth it has no time to flow down the spout. We all stood
there under the
awning and just inside the door of the center.
We waited, some patiently, others irritated because nature messed up
their hurried day. I am always mesmerized by rainfall. I got lost in
the sound and sight of the heavens washing away the dirt and dust of
the world. Memories of running, splashing so carefree as a
came pouring in as a welcome reprieve from the worries of my day.
The little voice
was so sweet as it broke the hypnotic trance we were all caught in.
"Mom, let's run
through the rain," she said. - "What?" Mom asked.
"Let's run through the rain!" she repeated.
"No, honey. We'll wait until it slows down a bit," Mom replied.
This young child waited about another minute and repeated: "Mom, let's
run through the rain,"
"We'll get soaked if we do," Mom said.
"No, we won't, Mom. That's not what you said this morning," the young
girl said as she tugged at her Mom's arm. "This morning? When did I say
we could run through the rain and not get wet?"
"Don't you remember? When you were talking to Daddy about his
cancer, you said,
'If God can get us through this, he can get us through anything!"
Now the entire crowd stopped dead silent. I swear you couldn't hear
anything but the rain. We all stood silently. No one came or
in the next few minutes. Mom paused and thought for a moment
what she would say. Now some would laugh it off and scold her for being
silly. Some might even ignore what was said. But this was a moment of
affirmation in a young child's life. A time when innocent trust can be
nurtured so that it will bloom into faith.
"Honey, you are absolutely right. Let's run through the rain. If GOD
let's us get wet, well maybe we just needed washing," Mom said.
Then off they ran. We all stood watching, smiling and laughing as they
darted past the cars and yes, through the puddles. They held their
shopping bags over their heads just in case. They got soaked. But they
were followed by a few who screamed and laughed like children all the
way to their cars.
And yes, I did. I ran. I got wet. I needed washing.
Circumstances or people can take away your material possessions, they
can take away your money, and they can take away your health.
But no one can ever take away your precious memories... So, don't forget to
make time and take the opportunities to make memories everyday.
To Everything There
Is A Season And A Time To Every Purpose Under Heaven!
I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed
a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily
appraising a basket of freshly picked green peas.
I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green
peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new
the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr.
Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.
'Hello, Barry, how are you today?'
'H'lo , Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya.. Jus' admirin' them peas. They sure
'They are good, Barry. How's your Ma?'
'Fine. Gittin' stronger alla' time.'
'Good. Anything I can help you with?'
'No, Sir. Jus' admirin' them peas.'
'Would you like to take some home?' asked Mr. Miller.
'No, Sir. Got nuthin' to pay for 'em with.'
'Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?'
'All I got's my prize marble here.'
'Is that right? Let me see it' said Miller..
'Here 'tis. She's a dandy.'
'I can see that. Hmmmmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of
go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?' the store owner
'Not zackly but almost..'
'Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this
way let me look at that red marble,' Mr. Miller told the boy.
'Sure will. Thanks, Mr. Miller.'
Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me. With a
smile, she said 0'There are two other boys like him in our community,
all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain
with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever. When they come back
with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn't like
red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green
marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the
I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short
time later I moved to Colorado, but I never forgot the story of this
man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.
Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just
recently, I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho
community, and while I was there, learned that Mr. Miller had died.
They were having his visitation that evening, and knowing my friends
wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary,
we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer
whatever words of comfort we could.
Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform
and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts...all
very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing
composed and smiling by her husband's casket. Each of the young men
hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her, and moved
on to the casket.
Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one; each young man
stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in
the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.
Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded
her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me
about her husband's bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening,
she took my hand and led me to the casket.
'Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about.
They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim 'traded' them.
Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or
size...they came to pay their debt.'
'We've never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,' she
confided, 'but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in
With loving gentleness, she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased
husband. Resting underneath, were three exquisitely shined red marbles.
We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds.
IT'S NOT WHAT YOU GATHER, BUT WHAT YOU SCATTER
THAT TELLS WHAT KIND OF
LIFE YOU HAVE LIVED.