Colleen could afford a moment or two of selfishness. Eight was a good age to indulge in the selfish desire to win. Where one can say “It’s mine, all mine!”
It was also a good age to be at an Easter Egg hunt with a child’s hefty appetite for money, especially when there is ten dollars to find! The Prized Egg!
Flitting like a butterfly from place to place, Colleen was looking for this hidden treasure. Her new shoes and Easter dress sparkling in the sunlight. Her soft fine hair swaying in all directions – her eyes darting like an eagle looking for prey!
She wanted all her friends to see her win! She wanted that Prized Egg!
But the price for her childish ego came suddenly in the form of a sprawling fall, tripping over the hose her selfish eyes did not see. Basket, eggs, candy and pride flew in all directions.
Landing with a little girl’s “Ummph!” her cheek brushed against a small buttercup bush of yellow and white. She lay there a second, squeezing her eyes tight, trying to catch her breath. Besides, she was embarrassed and didn’t want to look at anybody.
But just as quickly, she opened them to start retrieving “her” Easter stuff before someone else thought they were finding unclaimed treasures.
Yellow and white grabbed her attention.
A yellow Cross on a white egg! The Prized Egg! There it was! Under the buttercup bush!
Colleen heard crunching grass behind her.
“You ok?” Angelina asked as she ran to help her friend.
Looking at Angelina, Colleen said nothing. Her instinct to reach out and grab the Prized Egg froze. Something in her brain said, “Stop!”
She looked down as she pushed herself up a little with her arms to see the damage to her new dress; to say she was ok. She could hear Angelina straining to pick up the scattered candy and eggs.
Colleen was hoping – hoping – hoping.
Angelina gasped. Colleen’s hope was gone – she felt sad inside.
While holding onto Colleen’s beautiful, big Easter basket as she knelt by the buttercup bush, Angelina whispered, “Colleen, is…. is…this yours? Did it fall out of your basket too?”
On hands and knees now, Colleen noticed Angelina’s shoes did not sparkle like hers, her basket not as large, or as pretty. Her dress was not new.
Colleen knew why. Nobody had to tell her – she just knew.
She knew the Story of Easter too. About what Jesus did.
Her silent lips could not answer what was screaming in her selfish heart, “Yes! Yes! Yes! Get away from there! I found it first – it’s mine, all mine!”
Standing up and brushing off her dress, Colleen looked at her friend and quietly said, “No, it’s not mine.”
Colleen felt a sad/good feeling inside. She’ll have to ask her Mom if this is what “sacrifice” feels like.
She knew Angelina will “sacrifice” too. Nobody had to tell her – she just knew.
The look in Angelina’s eyes as she ran to her Mom sparked a warm awareness in her heart.
She watched mother and daughter embrace – she felt good/happy deep inside.
Colleen looked down at her new dress and shoes that were now covered with green and brown streaks. Some sparkles were hanging by threads. She began to fear what her Mom would do. How was she going to explain? She had already been told to be careful! Even her beautiful, big Easter basket had a broken piece sticking out.
She was trying hard not to cry.
Then Colleen heard her Mom call.
Startled, she looked up. Afraid.
Across the grounds, and through all the children running around, she could see her Mom with opened arms walking towards her, motioning for Colleen to come quickly.
Her Mom’s eyes told her everything was alright.
Dirty, stained and clutching her basket, she ran to the safety of her Mom’s arms – not questioning how she knew……. she just did.
Embraced in the secure love of her Mom’s heart – she felt happy/safe deep down inside.
The pain of Sacrifice
The blessing of Provision
The joy of Forgiveness
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