A Legacy of Little Things

Vick’s VapoRub: Memory Maker. 

Small Sacrifices
I’ve never played the hero. Not once have I been called upon to sacrifice myself to push my baby’s carriage to safety. I’ve never offered a kidney.

The best I can hope to leave, I realize, is a string of small gifts. 

Can those tiny touches build a legacy? Little things like bare-handing the VapoRub? My mom always did it that way–and though she’s been gone a few years now, I’m still impressed by her sacrifice.

I hope and expect to have years upon years to play the wife, the mom, the Lala, sister, auntie, daughter. But we never know, do we, the number of our days?

And we never know whether we’ll be called to that one grand act of heroism–the monolithic act of sacrifice that inspires ballads and statues (or maybe  just heartdeep gratitude within a stunned beneficiary). For most of us, I reckon, such opportunities for valor elude us.

I like it that way, to tell you the truth. I treasure my anonymity. And I’m soft. Easy is fine by me.

There’s more. When I consider my mother’s life, her ways of mothering, of loving us through our days, morning to night, I remember an endless stream of small sacrifices, an unstaunchable flow of devotion to the well-being of others.

I could string memories of her selflessness like pearls and have enough to dress the city in the finery of her tenderness.

Would I trade the endless pearls for the gaudy glitter of the One. Big. Gesture?

Would you?

34 “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38 And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’
Matthew 25:34-40 (NASB)