Gifts in the Garbage


When I came home, I noticed the garbage was still at the curb. Normally the collectors make their rounds much earlier in the morning. I had just bought a box of chocolates to pass on to our faithful garbage person next week. But seeing an opportunity to get that done early, I wrapped the candy quickly, wrote a card, and placed the gift in shallow, sturdy cardboard box and stuck the gift on top of the garbage.

Within a few minutes, I saw him pull up into the neighborhood. I took my place by the window to wait and see his surprised face.

However, all I saw was a man in a hurry, who grabbed my garbage can, whipped it around, and dumped the whole thing in the front of his truck. My heart sank. I ran toward the door and started to wave. I made it to His truck just in time to see the load getting chucked into the big bin in the back.

I could tell he was annoyed, since I was holding up his already late run. All I said was, “I had a Christmas gift for you in there… I’ll have another one next week. Just look for it!” He smiled slightly confused and nodded.

It occurred to me that it takes a lot of skillful communication to make someone see gifts, when all they are used to seeing is garbage.

“Lord, help me to do my best to remove distractions and hurt
before I leave gifts.
Help me to show others how much I love them –
and in that point to Your love for them.
Show me how to love like You do.
Teach me humility and give me a servant’s heart.”

If you then, who are evil,
know how to give good gifts to your children,

how much more will your Father who is in heaven
give good things to those who ask him!

Matthew 7:11 (ESV)

(Heidi Viars, 2013)

About Heidi Viars

“If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth ...” ― C.S. Lewis ..... In my pursuit of self, I found utter darkness. In my pursuit of truth, I found Jesus, who dispelled the darkness by His forgiveness. Now I follow Him and try to understand Him better. I am a wife, mother of 6, blogger and love taking photographs of sunrises.
This entry was posted in Christian Poetry, Devotional, Prayer and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to Gifts in the Garbage

  1. krcc says:

    What a story. How thoughtful of you. I too am so grateful tomy trash collector.

  2. Rene Yoshi says:

    Awww…. I love your perspective! Thank you so much for sharing your inspiring insight!

  3. Ann says:

    “It occurred to me that it takes a lot of skillful communication to make someone see gifts, when all they are used to seeing is garbage.” – so true! I wonder how much chocolate I’ve missed 🙂 Have a blessed Christmas!

  4. Lovely photographs; good Scripture.

  5. I am sorry that happened to you, Heidi. This post is such a powerful metaphor; we should always be looking for the blessings among life’s garbage.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Just about to post what happened this morning 🙂 stay tuned … wishing you a wonderful and very Merry CHRISTmas, Bill. May you find Him to be all the gift you ever need, wrapped securely in a messy manger 🙂

  6. cshowers says:

    Heidi, that was beautiful, and I never thought about that before. I mean yeah, I know sometimes it’s hard to see the good for all the bad, but I never really thought about how we throw gifts away, because all we see is garbage. How sad is that? I wonder, in my own pain, how many lovely gifts I’ve carelessly thrown away, because I couldn’t see through the trash? You’ve given me much to think about this morning. God bless you, my friend and I pray you have a blessed Christmas!


  7. Heidi Viars says:

    Thanks so much for your visit dearest Debbie! I love to see that sweet face on that swing 🙂 I hope your Christmas will be wonderful, as you seek and find those gifts your Father has put out for you everywhere 🙂

  8. Debbie says:

    This is so Jesus, sending us His message through you! Praying now to see Him each day and receive the gift of that! Thank you, Heidi, and God bless you as you try again! 🙂

  9. pattisj says:

    That’s a sad ending for the chocolates. Hopefully the do-over works better. Merry Christmas!

  10. How often do we cover His blessings with our worries, our fears, our ‘blindness’ to His gifts, His mercy, His grace … oh! Heidi … thank you so much for every lesson that you have given us this year through your beautiful, inspiring posts … thank you so much for your sweet friendship … wishing you the very best Christmas and New Year for you and your loved ones xxxx

    • Heidi Viars says:

      I so agree with you … how often do I miss it? Thanks Liana, for always blogging with such dignity and edifying words! You are much appreciated!
      Have a wonderful Christmas. May you see God’s gifts all around you … and especially the One He left for you in a manger over 2000 years ago 🙂

  11. Caddo says:

    How distressing! But I’m glad for you that you could see God’s lesson in it–that is pure gold!! God bless you BIG–love, sis Caddo

  12. Heidi Viars says:

    Wishing you a wonderful Christmas, Lois .. thank you so much for sharing this with me. Your comment convicted me and made me think how often I miss what God has left for me. I am so grateful to Him for His grace … which He poured out for us in Jesus! Blessing to you, dear friend!

  13. Lois Van Dien says:

    Hi Heidi, how true this is. I loved your analogy. While I was trying to read your article, I was being annoyed by my daughter until I suddenly realized I myself was shunning away a gift God gave me 29 years ago (my Down Syndrome daughter), who repeatedly over and over again tells me things that are on her mind. It made me stop reading your article so that I could give her 100% of my attention and thank God for the beautiful child that was standing next to me talking. I was grateful for having her in my life.

    Merry Christmas, Lois

  14. Rosemary Nelsen says:

    Astute and insightful response. It made me THINK. God is constantly getting rid of the garbage in our lives. The question is, “Do we see His gifts?

    • Heidi Viars says:

      Oh, that we would see His gifts – as He has displayed them all around us … and may we not miss the most important one, which He left for us in a manger 🙂 Love you, friend, and wishing you a blessed Christmas!

  15. Point well taken Heidi . . . Merry Christmas!

  16. Skye says:

    Oh, Sweetie, I am so sorry that happened! God will use it, though. I am quite sure. I know He is using it in my heart this morning through your re-telling of the story! Big hugs sent your way!!

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