"It held three things"
[By: Bob Perks ©2002 - Bob@BobPerks.com]

3-20-02 Church Within SOW Seeds Service - Story #180
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Welcome
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Greetings my Dearest Sisters and Brothers, and welcome again to Church Within's Story of the Week ["SOW Seeds”].

This week's SOW Seeds Story, contributed by: Bob Perks - Bob@BobPerks.com

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Story of the Week
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"It held three things"
(By: Bob Perks ©2002 - Bob@BobPerks.com)
 
Tucked away in the corner of my attic is a small box that contains my life as a child.  Attics are like our minds.  We put things there that seem to be of little value at the time, but once explored they become a treasure chest.
 
I was looking for something and stumbled across my childhood.  I hadn't been back there in years.  I always took pride in still having a child-like attitude toward life, but recent challenges have fogged up that view.  A temporary set back in thinking, I'm sure.
 
I always knew that box was up there and thought many times I'd like to walk that walk again that takes you back to places you long to be.  But time always got in my way.
 
My wife had repacked most of the old cardboard boxes that were beginning to crumble, placing the contents into new plastic storage boxes. 
 
I sat down next to it and slowly lifted the lid.  On top was my stuffed chimp that I dragged all over the place when I was in the single digits of my life.  I held it and looked into its eyes thinking, "Well old boy, we've been through a lot together.  Actually you look better than I."
 
Setting it down next to me, I fumbled through the bits and pieces of my life.  I held photographs that made me sigh.  I found about two dozen rolls of film that were never developed.  I remember the last time I found them I thought about taking a few to see if they were any good.  But I decided against it.  I didn't want to know they were useless.  Holding them in my hand, the wonder of all the possible memories seemed more precious than knowing they were gone.
 
Then I found my treasure box.  It was my mother's.  Picking it up, I gently ran my fingers across the top.  It was made of pine and had four small wooden legs.  In the upper right hand corner was a red heart.  It was a simple looking box, now all scratched and dented, but still valuable to me.  From the small label on the bottom I remembered it once was filled with chocolates, most likely a symbol of my father's love for mom.
 
Like electric pulses running through my body, memories of them came flashing through my mind.
A box like this would most likely hold valuables tucked away for safe keeping.  Grabbing the edge of the lid I opened it slowly and looked inside.  I was right.  There they were, the things I held dearly, tucked away for days like this when I needed to remember.
 
I just sat looking for a few minutes.  My eyes scanned across the baubles and trinkets.  I didn't need to hold them, for the sight of them was like watching the film version of my life flash before my eyes.
 
"I forgot you existed," I said out loud. 
 
Then one at a time, I lifted them up for closer inspection.  There was my first Mickey Mouse watch, given to me by my brother.  I was actually an adult when I got it.  It's the only kind of watch I wear until this day. 
 
Next I discovered a piece of string with plastic beads tied to it.  This was the handiwork of my son, Keith. Finally at the bottom was a small beaded purse.  It was the handbag that my mother used when I got married.  I have a picture of her holding it.  It matched her dress perfectly.
 
I run my hands across and carefully open it.  I knew there was nothing inside.  I checked years ago and every time I rediscovered it.  Perhaps I'm hoping that magically a note would appear that wasn't there before.  Kind of a supernatural greeting card from her across the barrier of time.  You see, she died the next year from cancer. 
 
"That's it?" you ask.  "That's all your treasures?"  Yes, it held three things.  You see I never did need material things to know the value of my life. 
 
It's not the things from my life that are treasures, but the times they represent.  For in the final stages of my life I will re-live the moments I valued, not hold onto the things I bought.
 
More valuable than gold are the treasures that I hold in my mind. 
 
I found the box.  It held three things.  I remembered a life time. 

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The Prayer
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Dear God,        
        Love Shared with Others, Your Love passing through us to each other, These are my Greatest Treasures! Thank You!!

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Eternal Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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