The gift of the dirty socks – An unexpected lesson about giving. 3rd grade memory (40+ years ago: Christmas time): “I gave him a new toy. He gave me a pair of dirty socks.” I took the toy gift back home and told mother what happened. Mother was angry! I knew she would be. He gave her “only” son a pair of dirty socks when I gave him a new toy! When mother said, “return to school and give the toy gift back, and I will be right behind you,” something was wrong. Mother was undeniably angry, but why was she angry at me and why those strong words, “I will be right behind you.” Mother said, “What about the child? If you take the gift, the child will have nothing.” Mother was giving Jesus (the Gift) and I was an extension of her. I was her hands and feet giving a Christmas gift (Jesus) to an innocent child. The gift might be the only Jesus the child receives and I had took back Jesus. Mother taught me about giving to others as God gave His only son (Jesus) to us. There are numerous lessons in the dirty socks story that I will expound on in later articles. Mother and I laugh today about the dirty socks. God Bless my mother! Although she taught me about giving that day, she also taught me an important lesson of NOT accepting someone’s dirt. The children of the world will always give us what they are: the world, which is dirt, but we will give them the Gift (Jesus). Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Why are we surprised or upset when the world gives us what they are (dirt). Take the world (dirt), and give me Jesus (the Gift). “ What about The Child? If you take The Gift, the Child will have nothing.” Put your name in the blanks “What about _________? If you take Jesus, _______will have nothing.