My sister Judy called me recently, saying she wanted to tell me something about one of her grandsons. Judy and I have always been very close, even more so since the deaths of our father in January, 2006; our two older sisters in two days in January, 2011; and then our mother in June, 2012.
I was driving when she called, and luckily, I had already pulled off the road to listen to her, and was glad that I had. What she related brought fresh joy and perspective to our lives, and I want to share it with Glimpses of Faith readers because it exemplifies a simple truth: whenever you have the opportunity to do so, lift people up. Grief, especially when it seems relentless and involves so many beloved family members, always takes another step toward healing when joys are shared.
Judy’s youngest daughter, Mary Beth, and her husband have three sons and a daughter. Several nights prior, their middle son Finn, age eight, had had a big and trying-but-successful day at school. Plus, he finally had the delight of having a loose baby tooth come out and was so excited to put the tooth under his pillow for the anticipated replacement (with money, of course) by the tooth fairy. He happily prepared and went to bed.
Here’s the magic and power of this simple story, and how I believe God truly guides and directs even the youngest among us to see and act in the holiest of ways.
Finn’s big brother Colin, age twelve, seeing that his mother was tired, and still contending with baby brother Grayson, realized that his mother might fall asleep. Colin knew that possibly Finn’s fairy might not show up. So Colin took his own dollar, crept from his bunk bed in the room he and Finn shared, and put the dollar under his brother’s pillow. Then he went back to bed and fell asleep.
Soon their mother Mary Beth was nudging Colin awake to ask if he had he put a dollar under his brother’s pillow. Colin replied, “Yes.” His mother said she had come in to make sure that the tooth fairy visited, only to see that “another” sweet and brotherly tooth fairy had already been there! Colin said he had seen how tired his mother was, didn’t want to bother her, but didn’t want his little brother to be disappointed.
I know we all think many things in life have hidden or multiple meanings. I believe this wonderful story has those qualities and more. When joys are shared, burdens are lightened. Never hesitate to tell someone you love, or just someone you might come to love and believe needs encouragement– tell them every tender joy that you can share.