Not your own children. Other people’s children and not just the children of your best friends. Children at church and in your neighborhood.
Let me share with you the story of a sweet relationship that started recently because someone made time for and paid attention to my youngest daughter.
Sister Fairy approached me on a recent Sunday morning before church carrying two take-out containers: one contained a large cinnamon roll and the other a cream horn. The previous Sunday several of us went to CiCi’s Pizza after church and apparently Sister Fairy took the last cinnamon roll at the buffet just moments before my youngest daughter, Lily, went to get her own.
This sweet lady, a petite woman with a swirl of white curls, worried all week about that roll and brought these two desserts to my little Lily. When she asked if she could give them to her, I immediately said yes.
“Jerry said that with all of those kids I couldn’t take this to just one, but I said yes, I can, because Lily’s the one that I took the last cinnamon roll from,” she told me, with a twinkle in her eye. (Brother Jerry, her husband, is a tall man with kind blue eyes that trickle when he prays and I love him dearly.)
I knew this wasn’t about sugar or a possibly spoiled dinner. It was about concern for the feelings of my little girl. What mother could say no to that?
I didn’t witness the apology and the giving of the gift, but I heard all about it from my kids, many of whom seemed to wish they’d been in Lily’s place the previous week. She shared the cream horn, but enjoyed every last bite of that cinnamon roll.
Two weeks ago we were shocked and saddened by Sister Fairy’s sudden death from a massive heart attack. Sometimes when an older church member passes away, my kids don’t know them by name unless I give a description; point out where they usually sit; or even show a church directory picture. This wasn’t a problem with Sister Fairy; my kids knew exactly who she was.
I told the story of the cinnamon roll to a friend as we walked into services that Sunday and she encouraged me to share, so I stood and recounted this tale and the example that I pray lives on in the telling of it. I’m sad that this bond, this friendship between young and old, was cut short so soon after it began, but I hope it’s sealed in my little girl’s memory. Demonstrating love and kindness to the youngest among us—showing them they have value in our eyes—might impact their lives in ways beyond today, beyond what we can even imagine.
What can you do to show love to the children around you? Do you have a memory of an adult who paid special attention to you as a child?
By: Dawn, My Home Sweet HomeLeave a Comment