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November 2018: The Dream Builder—Generosity

Young Teddy was disinterested in school. Musty, wrinkled clothes, hair never combed, he was one of those kids in school with an expressionless face and unfocused stare. When Miss Thompson spoke to Teddy he answered in monosyllables. Unmotivated, and distant he was hard to like. When she marked Teddy’s papers putting X’s or F’s at the top, she always did it with a flair. She should have known better, she had his records and she knew more about him than she wanted to admit. The records read:

  • 1st Grade Teddy shows promise but poor home situation.
  • 2nd Grade Teddy could do better. Mother very ill. Very little help at home.
  • 3rd Grade Teddy is a good boy but too serious. His mother died this year.
  • 4th Grade Teddy is very slow but well behaved. Father shows no interest.

Christmas came and the boys and girls in Miss Thompson’s class brought her Christmas presents. They crowded around to watch her open them. There was one from Teddy. She was surprised. His gift was wrapped in brown paper and was held together with scotch tape. When she opened Teddy’s present out fell a gaudy rhinestone bracelet with half the stones missing and a bottle of cheap perfume. The other boys and girls began to giggle but Miss Thompson had enough sense to silence them by immediately putting on the bracelet and perfume on her wrist. Holding her wrist up for the children to smell she said, “Doesn’t it smell lovely?” And the children taking their cue from the teacher agreed with “Oo’s” and “Ah’s”.

When school was over and the other children left Teddy lingered behind. He slowly came over to her desk and said softly, “Miss Thompson…Miss Thompson, you smell just like my mother…and her bracelet looks real pretty on you. I’m glad you liked my presents.”

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Edited by Rev. Mary Hansen. The newsletter will change regularly. We look forward to hearing your stories, comments and input.

 

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