Daily Thoughts, February 8, 2002
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The pink slippers did not cost much, a mere $1.40. To a four-year-old girl named India they were sent directly from heaven! She was already in her fancy dancing dress, running barefoot through the house, carefree and happy. Just the sight of her uncle coming in the door brought a bright, shy smile to her face. She just knew something special was going to happen!

The moment was a bit long in coming. Her brother was making lots of noises over his pint-size skateboard, already scheming on how he was going to slide into class as he flashed his new skills. Even when it came to her turn she had to guess which hand had the present. First chosen was the left hand, which revealed a pink ballet slipper for the left foot, then the right hand for the missing sibling. Her twinkling eyes let her emotions out first, then the arms reaching up to grasp her uncle’s neck and a big kiss planted in thanks.

The contrast with office politics could not be more complete. We all know that “a shifty eye betrays an evil intention; a clenched jaw signals trouble ahead.” (Proverbs 16.30) And yet we easily rationalize that this is the only alternative given the battles we find ourselves in.

Is this really true?

India tells a different story! She knows life is tough. She is a battler and scrapper with a dramatic flair. She also knows how to experience life to the full. She teaches you and me about how we can respond when we receive an unexpected kiss of compassion, mercy, or grace.

You and I have a unique opportunity every time our eyes meet another. We can give away a twinkle of mercy and love, a smile of compassion and acceptance, and extended arm of grace. Some gifts are not measured in the things we call money. When we experience them as India did we know their true value, priceless!

Today I can give away everything God gives to me; gifts with values beyond comprehension – compassion, mercy, and unconditional acceptance!

February 7, 2002
February 9, 2002