The gift not in the box

Standing in a long line at the post office the other day, I got chatting with the older gentleman in front of me, who was sending a wedding gift to his niece: a pair of candlesticks that he had picked out with great care, gotten shipped all the way from Israel, and wrapped and repackaged for the newlyweds with ribbons and a handwritten note.

Candlesticks because that's the wedding gift his beloved late wife always used to give, and he was carrying on the tradition in her honor. These particular ones because, of the hundreds he looked at online, they were the most beautiful he could afford. It was obvious he was pleased with the gift.

He hoped they would like them. 

I wish I could have bottled up the love in this man's words and put that inside the box.

Instead, it lived inside him, making him smile, its impact on the recipients almost irrelevant.

And as a witness to the story, a piece of his love now also lives inside me. It reminds me of how much unseen goodness there is in the world. Calls me to pay more attention. Urges me not to take the gifts I receive for granted.

My hope is that a bit of it now lives inside of you, too.