A Cup of Patience

July 25, 2022 by  
Filed under Humor, Stories

By Kim Stokely –

It was stupid. I know it was. It was an extravagant little item that I didn’t need.

But I wanted it.

I wanted it bad.

What, pray tell, had captured my attention and aroused my desire?

A teapot.

Yup. A tiny silver teapot. But it wasn’t only a teapot. The dainty beauty sat upon its own little cup and it contained its own little diffuser. It beckoned to me like an island oasis. “Buy me,” it whispered. “Fill me with extravagant tea leaves from exotic lands, and when you sip the liquid from my brew, I will take you there!”

Okay. Maybe it wasn’t quite as specific as that, but the pot definitely spoke to me of relaxing cups of tasty tea sipped over the pages of a good book. I checked the price of this diminutive treasure. Not too expensive, but I still didn’t feel as if I could justify the purchase. It was, however, close to my birthday. I suggested to my mother-in-law, browsing beside me, that she could drop a hint to my kids that this would be the perfect gift. As we were out- of-town, I knew my children only had a small window of opportunity to buy it.

I watched them the following day.

They never left the house.

That night, the entire family gathered at a restaurant just around the corner from the shop where my obsession sat waiting for me. Since I knew my kids hadn’t bought the teapot for me, I decided to walk to the store after dinner and buy it myself. My mother-in-law stopped me. Rather emphatically.

I figured she planned to buy the tea pot and send it to me for my birthday. I waited, like an impatient child at Christmas, for my package to arrive in the mail. As the days ticked down to my birthday, I jumped at the sound of every truck coming along the street, fully expecting the UPS man to deliver my desire.

But he never came.

Instead, the mailman unceremoniously stuck a large envelope in our mailbox. It squished when I pulled it out. My heart sunk when I read the return address and realized that it was from my in-laws. It wasn’t my tea pot. It contained a beautiful scarf necklace. The perfect complement to the new outfit I’d bought with a gift card from my mother.

But it wasn’t the teapot.

I argued with myself that I didn’t need the teapot. That my birthday had been most pleasant even without the gift I’d wanted. As the day wore on, it was harder to convince myself.

But then, just before the day ended, my daughter presented me with a cylindrical box decorated with a bow. I knew without opening it what it contained. My kids had given money to my sister-in-law who’d slipped out, bought the teapot, and snuck it to my children while I wasn’t looking.

Now when I sip my tea, I don’t think about exotic places. I think about how I almost let my frustration rob me of my happiness. The teapot has become a symbol of my walk with Christ. I am reminded that God has a good and perfect will for my life, but sometimes I have to wait for His perfect time. His gifts may not come when I think they should, but I think that’s so I will appreciate them even more when they do arrive.

About Kim Stokely

Kim Stokely has toured throughout the country in a one-person musical about women in the Bible. She lives in Nebraska with her husband and a variety of creatures including: two teenagers, two dogs, a parakeet and a legless lizard. Her stories have been printed in Chicken Soup for the Soul, Vista, and Writers’ Journal and she invites you to visit her website @ www.kimstokely.com to read her award winning short story, Bingo.
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4 Responses to “A Cup of Patience”
  1. Very well done, Kim. It is a cute article. This reminds me of some cross earrings I saw with my one daughter-in-law and my granddaughters. I loved them. In fact, I am wearing them to NWW tonight. However, they only had two pairs. My daughter-in-law put them up to her ears, and they looked lovely on her so I stopped by the department store at a later date and bought them for her. I still, though, pined for my own pair. Well, then came Mother’s Day and she had purchased them for me. She does not know her pair sits waiting for Christmas. God bless.

  2. Cyn Rogalski says:

    I have been in similar shoes Kim. Amazing how a little trinket can have such power over us. So thankful for His gentleness with us in our walk!

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