—the Little Stream
I hope that title is not misleading anyone. The only thing I am giving away today is the gift of knowledge.
But, what a gift, eh? I try.
I want to tell you a true story that I read in an Anne Lamott book (Bird by Bird) about an eight-year-old boy whose little sister was dying of leukemia. His parents told him that his sister needed a blood transfusion to save her life, and his blood would probably be compatible with hers. They asked if they could test to see if it was; he said they could. When they found out that his blood was a match, they asked if he would give his sister a pint of his blood. He said he would think about it overnight.
In the morning, he told his parents he would be willing to donate the blood. They took him to the hospital and he was placed on a gurney right next to his sister. They hooked him up to an IV, then withdrew his blood and brought it over to the girl. A few minutes later, the doctor came over to check on them, and the boy looked up at him and asked, "How soon until I start to die?"
I love that story. I love to think of that little boy who probably struggled through the night thinking about what he had to do to save his sister. I can imagine him side by side with his poor little sis, closing his eyes and thinking that he is breathing his last breaths. I love to imagine the relief he must have felt when he learned that not only would he be saving his sister, but he was going to live! Imagine how his parents would have felt hearing the story! It is one of my favorite examples of giving.
Now, this is the truth. We humble people, we who feel ourselves sometimes so worthless, so good-for-nothing, we are not so worthless as we think. There is not one of us but what God’s love has been expended upon. There is not one of us that He has not cared for and caressed. There is not one of us that He has not desired to save and that He has not devised means to save. There is not one of us that He has not given His angels charge concerning. We may be insignificant and contemptible in our own eyes and in the eyes of others, but the truth remains that we are children of God and that He has actually given His angels … charge concerning us, and they watch over us and have us in their keeping.
I think that, like that 8-year-old boy, we can be angels to one another. We can take care of one another and do what we can to make each other's lives better. And like this 8-year-old boy, any amount of sacrifice on our part is rewarded even more than we can imagine.
President Spencer W. Kimball said, "God does notice us, and he watches over us. But it is usually through another person that he meets our needs. Therefore, it is vital that we serve each other."
And then M. Russel Ballard very helpfully told us how to do that. He said, "In your morning prayer each new day, ask Heavenly Father to guide you to recognize an opportunity to serve one of His precious children. Then go throughout the day with your heart full of faith and love, looking for someone to help...If you do this, your spiritual sensitivities will be enlarged and you will discover opportunities to serve that you never before realized were possible."
Take care, guys. Remember the Little Stream, "There is something all can give."