Single parents have it harder than anyone. Balancing the budget, paying attention to schedules, and still finding time to spend with the children is enough responsibility to make anyone’s head spin! Children don’t always understand the concept of money or realize how much something costs. When they splatter paint onto the carpet, they don’t understand that we’re no longer getting our deposit back or that carpet is expensive to replace! They think in the moment. If it makes them happy, they don’t stop to question whether or not it’s right or wrong.
The story goes that some time ago a mother punished her 5 year old daughter for wasting a roll of expensive wrapping paper. Money was tight and she became even more upset when the child used the gold paper to decorate a box.
Nevertheless, the little girl brought the gift box to her mother the next morning and said, “This is for you, Mamma.”
The mother was embarrassed by her earlier overreaction, but her anger flared again when she opened the box and found it was empty. She spoke to her daughter in a harsh manner.
“Don’t you know, young lady, when you give someone a present there’s supposed to be something inside the package?”
She had tears in her eyes and said, “Oh, Mamma, it’s not empty! I blew kisses into it until it was full.”
The mother was crushed. She fell on her knees and put her arms around her little girl, and she begged her forgiveness for her thoughtless anger. An accident took the life of the child only a short time later, and it is told that the mother kept that gold box by her bed for all the years of her life. Whenever she was discouraged or faced difficult problems she would open the box and take out an imaginary kiss and remember the love of the child who had put it there.
In a very real sense, each of us, as human beings, have been given a Golden box filled with unconditional love and kisses from our children, family, friends and God. There is no more precious possession anyone could hold.
It is hard for us to remember to treasure each and every moment with the ones that we love. So many things get in the way during our lives that we can forget what is truly important. Did someone forget to take out the trash last night? Did they leave dirty dishes in the sink? Did they forget to pick up an item at the grocery store? These aren’t the things that are important in life, and the sooner we can remember that day by day, the more fulfilled our lives will be. This mom treasured the love of her daughter until her dying day, and that is what matters the most. Not the cost of wrapping paper.
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