“It’s a typewriter!”
I had dug through the newspaper-filled box and this was what I found in the mystery gift that my grandmother had sent me. It was not my birthday, nowhere near close to Christmas and besides that, my grandma was a stern no nonsense Dutch woman; parting with hard earned money did not match her personality.
The compact bright orange typewriter with lid/travel case sat on our kitchen table as we all studied and marveled over it. I was just thirteen; it was not the age of word processors or computers—typewriters were God’s gift to aspiring writers… or in this case, Grandma’s gift!
The occasion for this magnificent present had to do with a story I had written for a Christian youth publication called “Young Ambassadors.” Every year they featured a young writers contest. If chosen, your story would be published in their January/February issues. I had written a short story, submitted it months before, and promptly forgot about it.
Then a couple of weeks ago the letter had arrived, congratulating me on placing and telling me that they were sending me a prize under separate cover (a long playing record album of award winning Christian music). I was ecstatic! My family was proud. And my grandmother? Obviously, she believed in me and my ability to live out the dream I often stated: I want to be a writer when I grow up.
The first thing I did was purchase typing paper and set out to master the art of typing. I am proud to say I quickly became, and still am today, very proficient in the art of the ‘hunt & peck” method of typing.
The little orange typewriter (it was so cute!) occupied a spot on my desk in my bedroom for many years. I found I preferred to write in long hand however; my ideas seemed to flow so much better with a pen then with pounding the keys.
Still it was comforting to look over at the typewriter, a symbol of someone’s faith in me that I would some day do mighty things with words!
The years went by; marriage, children; and the typewriter, though seldom used, went with me. The painful decision to leave the marriage came abruptly and with that came a hurried attempt to gather what few belongings I could. The little orange typewriter was among them. My grandmother had long since passed away and my typing skills had not improved, but it was still one of my prized possessions.
So it is painful to remember the day, when desperate for cash, I pawned some of my nonessential belongings… the little orange typewriter being one of them.
How profoundly grateful I am that I'm not one of God’s expendables. For even on my darkest days, when I feel of little or no value, He speaks to me of my worth: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. (Isaiah 43:1 NLT)
Those words remind me of the ultimate price that was paid to release me from my captivity and bondage.
"In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace." (Ephesians 1:7 NKJV). Or as it says in The Message: Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, his blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we're a free people--free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. [Abundantly] free!
I may not have been able to ransom my little orange typewriter from the pawnshop, but daily, with grace abounding, God redeems me. Abundantly!
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