Giving lavishly

The Rev. Mary Koppel, writing at Dirty Sexy Ministry blog, asks "Do we know how to give lavishly?"


The day before Christmas Eve the adoption worker came to the house for a visit with my soon to be daughter. She brought with her papers for me to sign....

Before the adoption worker left she presented me with a beautifully wrapped gift. She told me that the gift was from a woman at her church. At her church, parishioners bought presents for all the children in foster care. This gift was for my daughter.

I thanked her. She left. I looked more carefully at the present. There was a card that read: “To my angel (my daughter’s name), from Bertha.” Now, I know the present was for my daughter, but it is really hard for a baby to unwrap presents, so I ripped the package open. Inside the package was expensive baby clothing.

It was the kind of baby clothing that you give to someone at a baby shower- extravagant and adorable. It was the kind of baby clothing that you give your good friend or your sister for a child that you will know and love. Bertha took time, and went to great expense to buy and wrap these outfits for my daughter. I filled with wonder.

I wondered: who is this woman buying expensive gifts for a child she may never meet and does not know? ... I wondered: how do I receive this gift? I also wondered: am I this generous?

In the past, I have gotten presents for children from an angel tree, but were the gifts as lavish? Sheepishly, I must answer no. Certainly, I gave nice things, but frankly, I did not put as much thought nor expense in the items I bought. It brings to mind the question: do I give thoughtfully and lavishly?

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