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The Rejected Gift

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‘Knock, knock’

‘Come right in’, I bellow.

It’s the delivery boy and he has a parcel for me.

Smiling like a watermelon, I reach for the gift box.

 

It’s covered in gleaming gold wrap, strapped with green and red ribbons.

It feels like a million bucks.

‘What could it be?’ I wonder, as the wrapping paper crinkles to my touch.

God knows it’s been a rough year;

Too many potholes, one or two craters and a curiously close call with catastrophe

God knows it’s been a tough steer;

Stuck in the same pit, not having moved an inch;

I wanted to, I said I would, I set my goals and said my prayers

But when the starter’s pistol went off, I ran in glue.

And now a box…

 

Who could have sent it?

There’s no card so I can’t tell. Still, I can’t wait.

I fiddle with the wrap. Place my ears to the box.

Is that music I hear?

The rhythm, in sync with my heartbeat

Hands trembling with excitement, I await a treat

The wraps come off; the ribbons too.

Ever so gently, I lift the lid on the box, and pause.

I turn it this way and that; that way and this

I shake it up and down; knock it on the wall

To find the hidden mystery within its depths

And for all my trouble, the grit sticks to my fingers

As the glitter fades from my heart;

‘It’s a hoax’, I say; It’s only a rock so dross’

Heavier than a sack of wet stones,

My soul is full of lead

The music is long gone; the light, a shade of coal

I grab the rock and lift my hand to throw

 

‘Wait!’ cries a voice within ‘Wait!’

Perchance it’s no ordinary rock;

Perhaps it’s a rock of strength; a pillow in troubled times;

An answer to a prayer

‘I have no use for it’ I say, ‘No room to keep it’

‘There’s always room for the things we cherish

How about on the mantle?’

Oh no! Right in view of everyone? I think not!

‘And on the dresser?’

‘I couldn’t bear to place that base piece of rock

Beside my expensive ornaments and finery

I’ll throw it out’

‘Oh no! Please hold. You could keep it in your room’

‘But I have no room for it. I can find no place for it’

So out the door it goes; thunk-thwack-thwack!

 

‘Can I keep it mister?’ asked a voice beneath the ebbing sunset

It’s a beggar in rags and he’s looking up at me

‘Sure you may, I don’t care much for it and I don’t have room for it’

‘Oh, thank you sir, I have room enough for it

Though queer of shape and size, it is a rock like no other’

And away the beggar saunters, far into the night

The rejected rock, close to his heart

Now the years have come and gone

Like sand coursing through a funnel

‘Hey friend’, a stranger calls; his smile a sunrise

‘I’m afraid you are mistaken’ I say, ‘I know no friend of great wealth and health’

‘Of course, you do’ says the stranger gay

I am the beggar beneath your window; the one to whom you bequeathed a rock

And while I stared with mouth agape,

This is the tale the stranger told…

 

No ordinary rock was the rock you threw away

It kept me warm on very cold days

And gave me a pillow on which to lay

One day while I held it up for shade

A ray of sunlight was caught in its till and like a fire that burned within,

It glittered and glowed through the rock’s dim crust

That little rock, I discovered in time

Was a coat of dross encrusting a diamond mine

That piece of rejected treasure

Brought me great wealth and pleasure

And in like manner… in no small measure

 

The builders rejected the Stone;

That brought us great rapture

The innkeeper, the Savior;

Who came to change our nature

The way, the truth and the life;

The son, who elevated our stature;

A Rock for all Ages

The bedrock of our times.

The reason for Christmas.

God’s gift to the world.

 

Written by Grace Ukanwoke

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Comments (3)

Brilliant read!!! Great Reminder of true meaning of Christmas .
Thanks

A reminder that the things that matter the most may not come in shiny glitters. Thank God for the gift of the Rock of Ages.

This is a beautiful piece; great reminder of the reason we celebrate Christmas.

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