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Holisticonline.com

Gifts From the Heart

by www.charactercounts.org

According to legend, a young man while roaming the desert came across a spring of delicious crystal-clear water. The water was so sweet he filled his leather canteen so he could bring some back to a tribal elder who had been his teacher. After a four-day journey he presented the water to the old man who took a deep drink, smiled warmly and thanked his student lavishly for the sweet water. The young man returned to his village with a happy heart.

Later, the teacher let another student taste the water. He spat it out, saying it was awful. It apparently had become stale because of the old leather container. The student challenged his teacher: "Master, the water was foul. Why did you pretend to like it?"

The teacher replied, "You only tasted the water. I tasted the gift. The water was simply the container for an act of loving-kindness and nothing could be sweeter. Heartfelt gifts deserve the return gift of gratitude."

I think we understand this lesson best when we receive innocent gifts of love from young children. Whether it's a ceramic tray or a macaroni bracelet, the natural and proper response is appreciation and expressed thankfulness because we love the idea within the gift.

Gratitude doesn't always come naturally. Unfortunately, most children and many adults value only the thing given rather than the feeling embodied in it. We should remind ourselves and teach our children about the beauty and purity of feelings and expressions of gratitude. After all, gifts from the heart are really gifts of the heart.

See Also:

The Top Ten Worst Gifts from Last Christmas
Figuring out what people actually want eludes many well meaning people every Christmas. To help gift-givers give wisely, here is a list of “what not to give.”

Survey Shows When it Comes to Holiday Gift Giving, Mom Knows Best
From fruitcake to tube socks, bad gifts abound. Here’s a survey conducted by national retailer Sam Goody that explains the good, the bad and the ugly of holiday gift giving.

Anatomy of a Bad-Gift Giver
From procrastinators to re-gifters, there are many types of bad gift-givers. Here are some of the most common bad-gift faux pas and how to avoid them.

Easy Holiday Crafts Kids (and Grown-ups) Will Love
During the holidays, families don’t have time for elaborate projects. Here are three simple crafts your kids will love this holiday season.

Give The Gift Of Good Health
Instead of giving the same old gifts this holiday season, give the ones you love something that will truly benefit them. Help them get more healthy through gifts of fitness.

Rich or Poor ??
What makes a person rich? What would happen if we all gave thanks for everything we have, instead of worrying about what we don't have.

Circle of Friends
A powerful inspirational story.
Never underestimate the power of your actions. With one small gesture you can change a person's life. For better or for worse.

Think Positive
Be thankful for your blessings!

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