Which Shelf Are You Looking At?
I’d like to tell you the story of two little girls. Their names are Gabby and Fay, and they are twins. One day they went to the toy store with their father, to pick out a toy because their birthday was coming. The girls were on a quest to find the best doll ever.
Gabby immediately grabbed a doll off the nearest shelf, a very pretty doll with a pink dress. “This is the one I want, Daddy,” she announced. “She’s the prettiest thing here.”
Fay looked over, and agreed. “I like the pink dress too. She looks like a princess. She’s the prettiest doll I’ve ever seen.”
Their father looked down, “Are you sure? Would you rather have those, or would you prefer that I choose for you and make it a surprise?”
Gabby piped up quickly, “Oh, no, Daddy, I want this one most. Please, please? Just let me have this one?” She hugged the doll closer as if to prevent her father from taking it away.
“And what about you, Fay? I’d like to give you the best present I can,” he continued as he met her eyes.
Fay thought for a few long moments, then looked down at the doll she held. To Gabby’s surprise, Fay put her doll back on the shelf and quietly turned to their father. “Daddy, you pick out my doll. I know you’ll pick the best one. You always give me the best presents, and you never needed my help before.”
“But Fay, this is the best doll here!” Gabby was aghast. “Daddy, aren’t you just going to get her that same doll? You’re being silly, Daddy!”
“Am I? Well, you’ve made your choice, so I’ll buy your doll now and we’ll put it in the spare bedroom until your birthday. I’ll come back later to buy Fay’s doll.”
The birthday dawned a week later, and the twins were both excited to open their presents. Each had received a few gifts from friends and relatives, which were quickly opened and exclaimed over. Finally, they turned to their father for his gifts. A small smile played around his face, chasing twinkles from his eyes.
Gabby’s doll was wrapped in pink with a silver ribbon. She tore into it quickly, and pulled out her doll. Her smile dimmed a little, and she looked over to watch Fay open her gift. The pink princess’s glamour was already wearing off.
Fay’s doll, on the other hand, was wrapped in blue paper and tied with a white ribbon. She tore into it carefully, and gasped at what she saw. The doll was dressed as a queen, wearing a wonderful gold ball dress. The queen doll was smaller, but even more beautiful than the one Gabby had picked, and she had a small trunk of accessories.
“Happy Birthday, Fay!” said her father.
Fay’s eyes shone. “Oh, Daddy, she’s so beautiful!” she breathed. “Thank you for picking her for me!”
“Daddy! Where did you find this doll?! I didn’t see it at the store.” Gabby’s eyes were stormy and her tone upset.
“Oh, this doll was there all the time, but you couldn’t see her. She was on the top shelf, above your head. You chose your doll from the ones you could see, but Fay decided to let me choose from the dolls I could see.”
* * * * * * * * * *
Are you like Gabby? So intent on finding the best present, best job, best husband that you are unwilling to step back and let God do the choosing? So sure of yourself that you won’t relinquish control? What if God is like this father and can see the top shelf? What if He has bigger plans, if only you’ll let Him give you His best? Will you be like Fay and wait?
Note: I heard a version of this story from my husband during our engagement period, and it was not original with him. I have taken some artistic license with it, but I hope you enjoyed it anyway. Stay tuned for the second question!