An Extraordinary Gesture of Love from a Stranger

A kind stranger shows a little boy the true spirit of the Christmas season.

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An Extraordinary Gesture of Love from a Stranger

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. —Philippians 2:3–4 (NIV)

My son opened the little wrapped shoe box that was handed to him by a white-bearded man. He wasn’t playing Santa Claus; he was part of a team from North Carolina who’d visited our New York City ministry to give early Christmas surprises to the children. Brandon was delighted with each simple gift. “Crayons!” he screamed. “Toothpaste!”

His favorite gift was a yo-yo, and the two of them spent time playing with it. Brandon watched each demonstration carefully, and both cheered when he finally got the hang of it. I was especially grateful for the attention he was receiving since his own father had recently chosen to no longer be in his life.

A while later, I heard Brandon crying. His yo-yo had broken, and the bearded man was working hard to put it back together.

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Brandon cried even more when it was obvious it couldn’t be fixed, but he calmed down when we handed out cupcakes. I wanted to thank his new friend for trying to fix his toy, but I couldn’t find him. “Oh, he went to the store to buy another yo-yo for Brandon,” one of the other team members said.

The store was more than ten blocks away, and it was snowy outside. When the bearded man came back holding a small bag, he gave Brandon so much more than a yo-yo. He showed my little boy that he was worth a long winter walk and deserving of such extraordinary loving-kindness.

Lord, thank You for the hearts of Your servants who go above and beyond. Continue to stir the hearts of Your people to demonstrate Your amazing and personal love for us all.

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