A Gift That Keeps on Giving

There are very few things that bring me joy. On top of the list is probably a box of Korean books freshly delivered straight from Seoul, my beloved city. The day my most recent order of books arrived, I was in the darkest mood I’ve felt in years. I ordered them a month ago, when I was flying high with the idea of opening a Korean book cafe to benefit the Korean community in my area. The absurd idea lost its magic as I was quickly coming back to reality. As my depleted idea of a book cafe laid on the ground like a flat balloon, my mood shifted back to the state of the original sin, the day when Adam and Eve got evicted from the Garden of Eden. They must have felt this way on that grim day. No hope, just endless dread.

So when I saw a box with a Korean bookstore label sitting in the snow on my front door, it wasn’t just a box of books anymore. It was a care package sent from God to save me for the day. After sniffing the fresh smell of my new books, I gently placed them on my small desk by the window. I sat on my chair and stared at the wonderful sight.

The truth is, I won’t even read some of the books I order. The image of unread books stacked up high by my window overlooking the woods in the backyard accounts to 80% of what motivates me to buy books. It’s a representation of all things that I love: The snow, the woods, the big bay window, the writing desk and the books recently published. It’s a life I have always dreamed of since I was a child objectified in one plain view. It’s the only dream that I’ve ever held, and it is here as a reality. It’s a reminder that I must not forget to thank God who has granted all my innocent prayers that I have sent up His way even before I knew Him at all.

So the other day, I have decided to give Jesus a gift as well. I offered up a pot of simple flowers. I lit my candle and placed red flower pot under the Cross. This simple act reminded me of the Eucharistic Adoration where the small chapel was full of the sacred smell of incense and the alter was adorned with beautiful flowers each assigned volunteer donated on Thursdays. I have moved far away from my beloved parish where I was blessed with a quiet time with Jesus every Thursday. And the pandemic is preventing me from continuing the tradition here in my new city I dwell now. Even so, I realized that I can create a sacred space here in my own house.

I already look forward to this coming Thursday when I get to offer up some new flower arrangements to Jesus. Although I have a feeling that by giving the flowers to my Jesus, it will be I who will be blessed in the process. It’s a gift that keeps on giving.

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