The Moore American

October 3, 2012

From a child comes a lesson in value and importance

By Wanda Billbe
The Moore American

MOORE — We attended a Library Book Sale.

So many treasures to browse, so little time.  As we meandered from table to table, we noticed a little girl about 3-years-old. She had picked up a Cinderella book and danced over to her mother.

“Mommy, look! It’s Cinderella! Can I have it, please?”

The mother looked at the book and replied, “But you already have one just like this – everything’s the same.”

“Uh-uh, this book doesn’t have any wrinkles like mine does from looking at it so much. It looks new,” the little girl responded.

Children’s books were only 25 cents, so the young mother put it in her bag and continued looking.

A few minutes later the little girl ran up to her mother again. “Look, Mommy! This princess has hair just like mine and her name starts with “R” just like mine. We just have to get this one, too, Mommy. I want you to read it to me tonight.”

The book? “Rapunzel.” 

“Oh, you’ll love this story,” the mother told her daughter and added it to their collection.

When our son was young, oh, how he loved books! We’d spend hours every night reading to him. More often than not we read the same book at least two or three times each night. He just couldn’t get enough.

Shortly before we left we noticed the little girl pulling her mother to a table in the corner. Curious, we gravitated in that direction.

“Mommy! They’re selling an Angel’s Bible! Isn’t that against the law?”

We all looked at the table. Sure enough, from a child’s eyes it must have looked like an Angel’s Bible. It was white with special gold trim and gold metal tips on each corner. The soft padding cover only made it seem more heavenly.

Smiling, the mother said, “It’s not an Angel’s Bible, honey, it’s a Family Bible.”

“But all of our Bibles are black or brown. This has to be sent from heaven Mommy, I just know it belongs to an Angel. We have to give it back. They must have left it here like we sometimes leave our Bible at church. The Angel must be looking all over for it.”

The little girl was frantic with worry. 

“Trust me, honey, it doesn’t belong to an Angel or they wouldn’t be selling it here at the library.”

“I’ll bet its worth a million dollars,” the girl said.

“Let’s ask the lady at the table up front how much it costs. If it’s not too much, we’ll buy it for you.”

Reverently, the little girl carried the white Family Bible up to the table. We didn’t hear the conversation – it wasn’t necessary. The little girl’s face simply glowed.  Whatever price was quoted, it was something workable because the little girl held that Bible in her arms like it was the most precious gift in the world as she waited for her mother to finish looking at books.

Just before we left the sale we took one more look at the little girl with the same letter “R” in her name as Repunzel. We watched as she kissed the white Bible and closed her eyes.

Others in the room had witnessed the same awe and wonder of this precious child. We glanced at each other and wordlessly acknowledged the silent sermon we’d all just received.

In a room full of thousands of books there’s still one: The Bible, that, after all these years, holds the most value, gives back more than we could ever imagine and for centuries to come will continue to do the same.

Wanda Billbe is a periodic contributor to the Moore American.