Wednesday, April 28, 2010
The nights were warming up. That was a blessing. It had been a long winter and even spring could not shake the bite of cold from its nights. But the tide was finally turning and the bite faded into the warmth of humidity, as the summer opened its tired eyes and woke from its long sleep.
Speaking of sleep, it was easier to sleep when it was warmer. The cloth she used to call a jacket was best suited as a pillow, now that it wasn't needed for warmth. But her feet were her biggest problem.
Sara sat up on her make shift bed, a vacant bench, and drew her knees beneath her chin. She reached down and rubbed the tops of her feet. They felt warm to the touch, which had more to do with the nighttime temperatures than with circulation. The warmth helped the healing process, but with another long day of walking ahead of her, she knew the tender sores would soon reopen and the pain would quickly return.
And there was really nothing she could do about it.
Sara suddenly remembered her gift and her feet dropped to the ground as she bent over to see if it was still where she had placed it the night before. Relief flooded her soul when she spotted the beautifully wrapped present sitting patiently under the bench, exactly where she had put it. She reached for it and pulled it onto her lap.
This present meant the world to her. It's what made the pain in her feet fade while she walked. It wasn't a burden at all - it was a blessing. She had no idea what was inside but because it was given to her, it had been placed in her care, it brought her great joy. She knew she could open it any time she wanted to, but the wrapping was so beautiful and she had never been given a gift like this before, that she just couldn't bring herself to pulling the bow off, let alone removing the paper.
What was inside could never be as wonderful as the anticipation of what was inside.
So she gladly carried it on her journey. She had nothing else. She had no baggage to weigh her down, no backpack to lug around. Just this box, which really wasn't heavy at all. She actually liked carrying it, because wherever she went, people could see that she was the owner of a beautiful present. When they asked her what was inside, she really couldn't answer but she was okay with that because this was her present and she could do with it whatever she wanted. She wasn't rude with people, but it really wasn't their business what was in her box.
Occasionally she mentioned that the joy of carrying the present lessened the pain in her feet, but even that was not necessarily a kind act since everyone struggled with their feet. It was almost cruel, since foot pain was so prevalent in the world and she wasn't willing to give her gift away.
After all, HE gave it to her. And HE could give it to others as well, but this was HER gift.
Sara stood and stretched. Another day, a few more miles down the road. She picked up her box and paused. Should she open the box today? She could carefully remove the wrapping and just peek inside. She felt that familiar ache in her feet begin to rise and she knew the sooner she began walking, the sooner her mind would be distracted from the pain. She glanced around and decided that one more day wouldn't make a difference. She would maybe open it tomorrow, if she woke up earlier.
So Sara continued on her journey, carrying the brand new shoes that had been given to her to heal her feet and make her journey easier.
Have you looked in your box today?