1 John 5:12 (New International Version)
Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
The gift was simple…the gift was small… But the promise it held was larger than life!
What made it so special was that it was a gift from Mary Em’s grandmother. Gram had wrapped it in a beautiful scrap of red silk scarf.
Mary Em rushed to open it, but when the gift fell out, she just looked at it. It was just a seed – a tiny black seed. Why did Gram leave her a seed before she died?
Mary Em was eight, and her Gram had said she would be leaving soon on a trip to Heaven. Gram assured her that before she left, she would leave her a special gift…a gift beyond imagination.
The little girl clung to the promise of the gift as she saw her grandmother begin to fade away. The cancer had made her so thin and frail, but Gram still smiled and said Jesus would be traveling with her on this trip.
Even now, two weeks after Gram had left on her “new journey”, as she had called it, Mary Em clung to the promise. But a seed…? What had Gram been thinking? Tears of disappointment began to drip down Mary Em’s face. She had hoped for more. But what was there left to do now, except to plant the tiny seed.
An old clay pot was found behind the shed and filled with chilled spring dirt. She placed the seed deep into the soil as she thought of Gram. Two long months had passed and oh, how she still missed her! New tears of sadness and grief slid down her cheeks gently watering the seed’s new resting place.
As the days and weeks passed, Mary Em cared for the seed. She placed the pot in a sunny spot, watered it, and waited. As she waited, she remembered…Gram’s smile, the fun they had baking cookies together, the way Gram pushed her high into the air on the swing until squeals of delight escaped her lips. As she remembered, she didn’t feel as sad anymore.
Finally about a week into summer, the tiny plant poked its head above the soil and drank in the rays of sunlight. Every day it grew taller and stronger as Mary Em cared for it. The small plant quickly grew and soon bloomed into a beautiful red poppy – just like the ones Gram had grown in her garden!
Mary Em loved to wake up to the little flower every morning. It was like hearing Gram say “I love you” each and every day. But then one morning, the poppy began to droop and hang its head. Mary Em watered it more and moved it to a sunnier spot. In spite of all her efforts though, the little poppy shriveled and died. Mary Em couldn’t bear to throw it away. She just left it there on her window sill. Now it brought sad thoughts – thoughts of Gram’s sickness and death.
Many weeks later, the air began to chill and the leaves began to tumble off the trees. Winter was on its way. Mary Em decided it was time to throw out the remains of the little poppy. As she did though, tiny black specks began to fall. They were seeds!
That is when Mary Em remembered what Gram had said – “Winter may come, but that just means Spring is on its way.” With this thought, Mary Em began to smile. She now understood that Gram’s spring had come in Heaven! She also realized the preciousness of Gram’s gift. The real gift was a lesson about life, a lesson about Christ – wrapped in the red scarf of His love, the seed of our life continues to live even after death and leaves even more seeds behind to be planted in the hearts of others. Truly He is the gift “beyond imagination.”
Dear Lord we thank you for that special gift You have given to each of us. We pray that we would make it our goal to share the gift with those in our life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.