The Unexpected Gift

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Our God is a God of surprises.

My husband and I recently visited our son and his family for a few days. They live in another state and we had not seen them for quite a few months. We were so excited to be able to spend some time with them. And we enjoyed playing with our 3-year-old grandson and 1-year-old granddaughter. The time just flew by.

We left on a Sunday. Our plans were to go to Mass first and then get on the road toward our next destination. I was so pleased when our son decided to go to church with us. Our daughter-in-law had to work so we were going to need to help him with the kids, which didn’t break my heart in the least.

The next surprise was learning that the church was named after St. Monica. My husband and I have been members of an Augustinian parish for years. St. Monica prayed for many years that her son, Augustine, would return to his faith. I have been asking for St. Monica’s intercession for our children for some time now. The “God-incidence” was not lost on me as we headed out to church with our son and grandchildren.

We sat in the back of the church just in case, but our grandchildren were very well-behaved during Mass. Towards the end, my grandson got a bit fidgety, not to mention chatty, so my husband gave him his rosary to hold.

When Mass was over, hubby asked the boy for the rosary and my grandson started to cry. He was so upset that we decided to go to the church bookstore to get him his own rosary.

As we were turning around to head in that direction, a woman came up to us and leaning down to our grandson, said that she had seen him at Mass holding a rosary and she wanted to give him a rosary of his very own. And she handed him a handmade rosary, made out of cloth and just perfect for a small child.

Talk about perfect timing.

I do not think I will ever forget the look on my grandson’s face. He lit up like a Christmas tree and gave us the biggest smile, even as big tears were still spilling out of his eyes and down his cheeks. And then he laughed with pure joy.

He had been given a gift. An unexpected gift.

And so had we.

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