I first wrote this on Dec 5, 2020. I submitted it to the Upper Room for one of their posts, and it was rejected, so now I can share it where I want. (Oh the pain of my first rejection – lol)
Today I read a short story where someone was presented a small box as a gift, made crudely, with nothing in it. The giver said his Mom taught him that love had to be shared, and that’s what he was doing. I loved the story, and it made me think of my box. I was still in bed when I read it, and I had to get up and come out and write it down.
Some 23 years ago, I was going thru a divorce after trying to hold it together for 14 years, and on my way to a job change, and single motherhood. At the same time, my Dad was going thru the awful debilitating disease of ALS. He had lost the ability to speak and found it hard to swallow, eventually losing the ability to walk as well. I don’t know or maybe I don’t remember the whole story, but he was out somewhere in his wheelchair with my Mom, when he made her go into the store and get this box. Now, while he didn’t have much voice left, my Dad had a way of letting you know what he wanted. My mom will surely attest to this. He wanted the box to give to me. It was a small (3” x 4”) box, made of cardboard, looking like an old wooden door with a brass doorknob and keyhole painted on it. On the outside was written, “Remember when the going gets tough…” and when you opened it, it was empty. The interior was black with a pair of little googly eyes and the words “You can always come over and hide in the closet with me.” This was my empty, crude box filled with love from my Dad. I still have that box as well as the little costume jewelry bracelet with the words, I LOVE YOU, engraved on it, that he also gave me. It sits on the shelf of my headboard, and I will cherish that little cardboard box for as long as I live.
It also reminds me of the love of God who is always there for me to hide myself in when the going gets tough.
Prayer: God of all, I thank you for your arms so full of love and comfort and peace. I thank you that I can come to you and hide in the closet with you when things get tough, and when that closet door get’s opened, things are a little better. Amen