A Lasting Gift
One December afternoon years ago, I spent a few hours in my local Christian bookstore shopping for Christmas gifts. My arms were already full when I stumbled upon a little gift book called A Passion for Books by Terry Glaspey. Its pages were filled with quotes about books and reading, excerpts from classic literature, and captivating illustrations. Even though I wanted the book, I didn’t feel like I should spend money on myself that day. So I whispered a suggestion to God, “Lord, I sure would love to receive this as a gift someday.”
I completely forgot about that little book until the next year when a close friend and I met for our Christmas lunch. We usually gave each other books, but I couldn’t help gasping when I opened my package and an old memory flooded my mind. Yep, you guessed it: Sherry had given me A Passion for Books, personalized with a sweet message and a wonderful quote about friendship.
A few years later, the book took on a new layer of meaning for me. I met Terry Glaspey at a writers’ conference and got him to autograph my copy. And he got to hear how his book was an answer to my prayer.
I still enjoy flipping through the little book. Sometimes I pull quotes from it to post on Facebook or Twitter. But most of all, I treasure the memory of how I received it. That’s why every December when I’m racking my brain for gift ideas, I return to the bookstore. After all, what other gift holds so much potential? Affordable, easy to wrap and mail, little chance of being the wrong size, and likely to be enjoyed for years to come. I only have to glance at the bookcase beside my desk to remember how special the gift of a book can be.
Dianne Neal Matthews is a freelance writer and the author of four daily devotional books including The One Year Women of the Bible and Designed for Devotion, which won a 2013 Selah Award. She also writes for websites and blogs, contributes to compilations (including Guideposts’ Mornings with Jesus), and teaches at writers’ conferences. To learn more, visit www.DianneNealMatthews.com or connect with Dianne through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.