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My wife knows that I am writing this blog, but as I am typing she doesn’t know what I’m writing. She did tell me there’s some kind of contest or something on wives of faith and that she couldn’t really figure out what is the best gift she ever gave. To me its obvious. I guess I am “cheating” since I am writing this and not her, and I guess its supposed to be written until the 14th of December, but since I don’t really care if she wins I have no problem in cheating. I just want to say this because there is no way she ever would. So now its story time, Russ style.
So back when I was in Afghanistan doing stuff I remember encouraging Aprille to get involved with other soldiers wives and stuff so that she would have people to talk to. I never figured it would turn out like it did, but I am so glad it did. Because Aprille give a present to somebody else, but she the greatest gift she ever gave was what she gave me.
So there is this girl Rachel who was pregnant during the deployment and she and Aprille talked and stuff. Dont ask me what “and stuff” means because its too girl for me to want to know in the first place I presume. Anyway, they developed this good friendship and then we say goodbye and move to Kentucky.
Well, Aprille is delighted to find out that Rachel was moving up the the same base as us with her husband. Granted they got here later than us, but I remember hearing about it more than once until they arrived. One of the things I didnt know about Rachel was that, in how far along she was, they really didn’t have much baby stuff. I felt bad about that but I didn’t really say anything. It was Aprille who came to me and said, “I want to do something.” At first I was scared and was like “ok what do you want to do?” She didn’t know at first but then she came to me and asked if we could get them a few things.
Now I’m going to say 2 things: First, we didn’t get them stuff because they were destitute or couldn’t provide for themselves or anything like that. As I understand the situation, Rachel didn’t know anybody in Kentucky that could give her baby gifts and she didn’t even have a baby shower when she was in Texas. Second, I am not saying this to get any kind of pay back or reward. I just want to honor my wife.
When this stuff was going on, my wife had already started buying baby clothes for the baby that WE DIDN’T EVEN HAVE YET! So naturally when she started bringing more clothes in, I got a little nervous. But the reason I never stepped in is that I saw her get sad on many occasions. She was concerned about Rachel and her baby so much and would probably still say she wishes she could have done more.
Some of you might know that she arranged to have a baby shower here at our house where she could give Rachel all the stuff she and others had gotten. And there were others. She didn’t just do stuff, she wanted other people to know and do something about it too. There is this one lady who didn’t want to be named that spent way more than the other contributors (so an anonymous kudos to her), but I was impressed to see how much work Aprille put in to making sure the gifts got here in time and got wrapped and everything was close to perfect.
Now here’s the gift she gave me: shame. I wish I could hide my head in the sand, be disowned from using the name Donaldson, and have Christ open up the heavens and scold me. When I saw how selflessly and passionately she cared for another human being who seemed to have nobody else who really cared…..at times it made me want to cry it was so beautiful. I am glad for my wife for all the things she does for me and helps me do. But I would gladly have her do nothing for me ever again, so long as she always shows me an example of true love and reminds me how I should live: sacrificially for the glory of Christ rather than myself. Hers truly is a gift that will keep on giving.