Saturday, December 15, 2007
The Spirit Of Giving
Life is often confusing when you're three. Little things that seem to make sense in theory (or in the van during a discussion), have a tendency to become fuzzy when the situation actually presents itself.
Take, for instance, the Salvation Army Christmas volunteers standing outside of stores during this time of year...
Sophie doesn't quite seem to understand the concept of what they do. She gets that they're not normally there, and are therefore, something special to behold. She gets that they're friendly. She gets that they ring bells that are shiny and "nice and jingly". She gets that they have a super-fun red bucket, for which to put things in. She even understands that if she stands there flashing her pearly whites and cute dimples, sometimes they'll sing her a Christmas song.
What she does not seem to get is the Giving-To-Those-Less-Fortunate-Than-You spirit of the whole project.
Yesterday, on our way out of Wal-Mart, she asked me if she could put some money in the bucket. I told her that was fine and handed her a couple of dollars. She took her time carefully putting them into the bucket and said to the sweet man smiling at her, "Here! This is for you! Have a Merrrrrrrry Christmas!"
(I was all 'aglow with Motherly Pride. She gets it! Yes!!)
We had no sooner taken three steps away when she yelled over her shoulder, "Hey, Man, now you can give some money to MEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"
(Or? I guess there's the remote possibility she doesn't get it.)
I did the Hand-Clapped-Firmly-Over-The-Mouth maneuver so often employed in the presence of our little loud Blurter-Outer. Behind us we left one very clearly amused volunteer - laughing loudly. When we got strapped in the van, I asked her:
"Sophie, honey, do you remember what we talked about - about why we put money in the bucket?"
She said excitedly: "Yes, Mama! I certainly do!"
(Ah, good.) I said, "Why?"
"Well.......", she said. "Because it's really fun to stick things in that hole."
All righty, then.
Yet another Teaching Moment right down the drain. So glad all those little chats about God's love and giving unselfishly so obviously made such an impact in her little mind.