I found this in my mailbox today.
Last week I took my children to a restaurant. My six-year-old son asked if he could say grace. As we bowed our heads he said, “God is good. God is great. Thank You for the food, and I would even thank you more if Mom gets us ice cream for dessert. And Liberty and justice for all. Amen!”
Along with the laughter from the other customers nearby, I heard a woman remark, “That’s what’s wrong with this country. Kids today don’t even know how to pray. Asking God for ice-cream. Why, I never!”
Hearing this, my son burst into tears and asked me, “Did I do it wrong? Is God mad at me?”
As I held him and assured him that he had done a terrific job and God was certainly not mad at him, an elderly gentleman approached the table.
He winked at my son and said, “I happen to know that God thought that was a great prayer.”
“Really?” my son asked.
“Cross my heart.” Then in a theatrical whisper he added, indicating the woman whose remark had started this whole thing, “Too bad she never asks God for ice cream. A little ice cream is good for the soul sometimes.”
Naturally, I bought my kids ice cream at the end of the meal. My son stared at his for a moment and then did something I will remember the rest of my life. He picked up his sundae and without a word walked over and placed it in front of the woman. With a big smile he told her,
“Here, this is for you. Ice cream is good for the soul sometimes, and my soul is good already.”
It also reminded me of a certain generous little 9-year-old I know. We had a bar of chocolate to split between the two of us for a snack. While I devoured mine in 2 minutes flat, she broke off cube after tiny cube and decided to save half of it for later. As we chomped our way to cocoa bliss, she suddenly stared at me, then wordlessly walked to the refrigerator and took out her saved-up chocolate. Putting it into my hands, she said “Akka, you eat it. You are thinner than me and you work so hard, you need it more than I do.” It made me want to cry…I swear it did.