“It’s mine! It has my name on it!” shouted Amy, my 3-year-old, from the backseat of the mini-van.
“No it’s not. I am putting it under the tree. You can’t have it!” Molly, who is 7, shouted back.
This is the argument that ensued yesterday on the way home from school. Over what? A small gift Molly bought for Amy at the Holiday House.
From the driver’s seat, I told them to stop shouting and put the gift back in the bag. Amy would have her chance to buy gifts at the end of the week and put hers under the tree too. That seemed to settle it.
Now, here I sit reading a poem called “A Valiant Life” in the book Language for the Heart & Soul by David Essel, and this struck me:
And you my friend
Have your dreams vanished before you?
Do you bow to another’s words who say
“You are not worthy?”
Or, do you rise like a giant
And stretch for the stars
Knowing the gifts you’ve been given
Are aching for their release?
How often do we allow another’s words to prevent us from opening our gifts? Well-meaning people may want to control your gift, tell you when you can open it, how you can open it and IF you can open it. Do they really know what is inside our gift? How could they? They trap us with their own doubt, “Are you sure you want to do that? How do you think that will work? How much is that going to cost? I don’t want to see you get hurt.” But can we be bold like a child, with a great sense of urgency, knowing “IT’S MINE and I WANT TO OPEN IT RIGHT NOW!” This is a powerful realization.
What gift do you have inside of you that you have not even dared to open? Are you afraid of what others might say? Why haven’t you opened that gift that is lying there under the tree with your name on it? A gift is a good surprise, and you never know what might be inside unless you dare to pick it up and start unwrapping it, piece by piece.
Maybe the gift is the ability to help others through your own not-for profit organization, maybe it is the pen that will help you write a book that will inspire others, maybe it is a new business idea complete with instruction manual, maybe it is a new friend who will change your outlook in life. Don’t let your gift sit there under the tree one day longer. OPEN IT. ENJOY IT. A gift that is just for you, with your name on it. No one else knows what is inside. Only you have the ability to open it. Go ahead, take a peek and see what beautiful gift is waiting for you to unwrap it!