The cutest thing happened today in the Activity Center. I have noticed that young children like to make things for their parents. Today a boy who is about to enter kindergarten came in and wanted to make something for his dad whose birthday was yesterday.
His mom brought him in and wanted him to paint something small (inexpensive), but he had his heart set on a ceramic baseball player statue that cost $6.00. His mom tried to talk him into a tiny ship that cost $2.75. He kept insisting on the baseball player because he was sure his dad would prefer that, and when she wouldn’t buy it he started crying. She sat down with him on her lap and called his father and said, “He is sad because he wants to paint something for you and he doesn’t know if you’d like a big baseball player or a small boat.”
The father came over right away and took his son by the hand and came into the craft store. What really touched my heart was when the boy stretched out his hands and said to his dad, “Pick anything you want and I’ll paint it for you!”
Well, dad made a show of looking over the shelves and then he said, “I think I’d like this little boat.” The boy looked doubtful and said, “I’d really like to paint the baseball player for you,” and his dad said, “I guess, but I’d rather have the boat.” That settled it. The boy bought the boat and happily painted it for his dad.
Later I saw his father outside and I said, “That was a good show you put on for your son!” The dad grinned and said, “Yeah, he’s still young enough to trick!”
For me, it wasn’t about the trick his folks played on him to get him to choose something cheap. It was about the generous heart of the boy and his expansive gesture, as though he was offering half of his kingdom to his father. That in itself was the true gift!