Herald Journal Columns
Dec. 19, 2005, Herald Journal

Gifts to share


Everyone has special gifts to give. Within time, we learn that the sharing of those gifts can give a person one of the best kinds of feelings you can feel.

The above words bring my thoughts to a little boy. He was the son of a shepherd. His family didn’t have much money; therefore, they were not able to afford to buy toys.

The boy spent his time helping his father tend to the sheep in the pastures, and there was not much time for playing.

One day, the boy went with his father to the market in town. As they were passing by stands where people sold their goods, the little boy spotted a beautiful drum, with silver rings around it and a gleaming white top.

He stared at it a long time because he wanted it very badly, but he didn’t say anything because he knew that his family could not buy toys for him. His father paused, watching his son staring at the drum, and he knew what he was thinking.

That night, after the son had come in from the pastures where he was helping with the sheep, he ate his supper and went up to get ready for bed. There, on his bed, sat the beautiful drum he wanted so badly.

The next day, and every day thereafter, the little boy carried the drum with him and practiced on it as he went out to the pastures with the sheep. Both the sheep and the shepherds became accustomed to the drumming, and in time, the boy became quite good at it.

One day, a very poor family came to the area, looking for a place to stay. The young women was pregnant and ready to have her baby any day.

They needed shelter, but were unable to find any in the village below. The boy’s family allowed the poor family to stay in their stable.

The poor family was very nice to the young boy, and they were so poor that the boy felt he wanted to give them something special in return for their kindness. But he had nothing to give them.

One cold night, the boy awoke to a bluish light shining in his window. He got up and looked outside, where he saw the stars shining more brightly than he had ever seen before.

The pastures below were even lit up with the starlight so that you could see the sheep clearly, even from afar. It gave the boy a magical feeling.

The shepherds, watching the sheep, were also gathered together, looking up at the unusually bright star. As they were all looking in silence, they heard crying coming from the stable.

The little boy went to look inside, where he saw the mother and the father holding a newborn baby.

The boy suddenly knew what he wanted to give them. He ran upstairs, got his drum, brought it down to the stable, and stepped inside.

He said, “This drum is all I have that is mine, but I want to give it to your baby so when he grows up, he can learn to play like I have.”

The woman smiled at him, and said, “I’ve heard you play your drum, and I enjoy it so much that I want you to keep your drum and share the gift you have for playing, instead.”

The boy was very happy to hear that. He picked up his drum and his little lamb nudged him. He began playing, “rum-pum-pum-pum.”

The Holy Child looked at him, and the music the little boy played made the Baby smile. The boy realized his gift was his best – simple, yet right from his heart.

The best gift we can give is to give of ourselves, a gift we always have to share.

The story about the Little Drummer Boy has become a legend. We pause a moment, to reflect upon the story.

Jesus was born unto us; this is a gift to all of us.

Jesus, growing up in life, shared his gifts of carpenter work, teaching, obedience, structure, correction, forgiveness, truth, and God’s Holy Word.

Jesus told stories, to bring memories to those around him. He healed many people – the blind, the sick, diseased, fearful, emotional, etc. Jesus’ hands were hands to serve, not to be served.

Jesus then gave the most precious gift of all . . . himself. He died on the cross for all our sins.

Jesus has no body now on earth . . . but yours.

Yours are the only hands with which he can do his work. Yours are the only feet with which he can go about the world. Yours are the only eyes through which His compassion can shine forth upon a troubled world.

Jesus has no body now – but yours, to share your gifts to others.

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