A car. It looks like most others. Four wheels, four doors, windshield, steering wheel, seats, motor. You get the point. It’s a ’96 Camry. And it was a gift to a poor Nanny. Completely paid for. To someone whose first car cost a mere $50, this was treasure beyond description.
Ellie sat there, eyeing me cautiously, wondering just who this person was who had come to care for her young grandson.
For four years we saw each other only occasionally. Birthdays, holidays, and the rare trip to the city for shopping.
Several years ago our lives became inextricably intertwined. Her husband died after a long battle with cancer, just days after her biopsy came back positive—malignant breast cancer.
We spent a lot of time together after that. I brought her home from the hospital after her surgery. We went to doctor appointments, chemo treatments, and the bookstore. We went shopping, shared our favorite books, compared tea cup collections, and spent time in companionable silence.
Her fight ended in 1997. I was with her when she died, holding her hand. She slipped out of my life as gently as she had come into it.
A few days later, her children came to me with a set of car keys. “She wanted you to have the car,” they said.
You may be wondering why I bothered to write this story down. It occurred to me today that there are a few parallels with what Jesus did for me.
You see, He gave me a gift, too. Though the Camry cost more than $15,000, Jesus’ gift is infinitely more valuable. The car became mine only after my friend died, but her death did not purchase the car. Salvation became mine only after Jesus died, and His death did pay the price for that gift!
I didn’t deserve the car. Her grandchildren made that clear. It was more than a gift, you see. It was Ellie’s way of telling me that I was loved, appreciated, and considered part of the family.
I didn’t deserve Jesus’ gift either, but I think He is trying to say the same thing.
Rachael Jones is a member of the Milton Adventist Church, and works as Assistant Manager at Quail Run Retirement.