Growing up, my mom’s closet was full of boxes—orange & apple boxes, falling apart boxes…and a magical box. The magical box didn’t look special, except that it had circulation holes in it (I think it had once been an orange box). It was filled with old, unwanted toys my mom had grabbed from our rooms.
Amazingly, after a month or two in that box, all those stashed away junk toys became the objects of our desire. Magic!
I remember sneaking peeks with my brothers and sisters to see feet, eyes, wheels or fur of some toy through the holes of that charmed box. We’d sigh as we glimpsed those ‘treasures’ and wish we could get them out to play with again.
Time passed and those boxed-up toys became our obsession. We would beg Mom to please, please, PLEASE get those amazing toys out of that box. Life would not be fun until we could play with them…like in the good old days.
When she would finally relent, after weeks or months of pestering, the day would take on a “Christmas-like” state. We kids would take each toy out in wonder, our eyes lighting up as we oohed and ahhed. Life was perfect! We had the best toys in the world, and didn’t even notice Mom nonchalantly picking up the now ‘unwanted’ toys we’d cast aside.
She filled up the box again and stashed it back into her crowded closet…and the magic would begin once more. Time in the mystical orange box would change those toys’ status from “unwanted” to “favorite.” It never failed.
Thinking of that box now, I realize that the most precious things that surround us and make up our life can easily be overlooked and taken for granted if we’re not careful–just like I did with toys as a child. It’s human nature.
Spouses, family members, jobs, talents, abilities, our own bodies can be brushed over as nonessential or unimportant as we wish and obsess over what we DON’T or CAN’T have. That’s why so many marriages fall apart, why so many families crumble and disintegrate. That’s why there are so many unhappy people in the world who are wishing for the NEXT thing to make them truly happy.
What the lesson of the MAGICAL BOX teaches me is that things that might seem unimportant today—if TAKEN away—might become the most important things ever…things we yearn for once they’re gone.
What would happen if your annoying chatterbox child was suddenly taken from you in a horrible car crash? Or what if your spouse who ticked you off with a thoughtless remark was suddenly dying of cancer? Or you lose your eyesight, or can’t sleep anymore? There are millions of scenarios. Hopefully we don’t have to lose something important in our life to realize what we already had.
Blessings surround all of us—even the homeless man wandering the street. We just have to have eyes and hearts to see them. We don’t need a magical box to put our possessions in to regain value. The value is already there. Take a minute or so each day to REMEMBER everything you already have…and the magic will happen.