On being real.



On being real.
“The Velveteen Rabbit” Linocut. Hazel Patterson.


My mother often read to me at bed time, when I was a little girl. I loved the sound of her voice ,the smell of her perfume, and the warmth of being held close to her, as she read to me. A favourite  book was “The Velveteen Rabbit” by Marjorie Williams. When I became a mother, I read it  to my children, and now I am reading it to my grand children.  The story is about  a child’s favourite toy rabbit. It is a story about love, and  about the value of being genuine from the inside out. The little rabbit was precious to the boy, not because he was expensive or modern, but because he had been the boy’s companion for a long time.It was his fidelity, rather than his appearance, that made the worn little rabbit precious. One morning in the nursery, the toys are having a conversation about what it means to be real. “Real isn’t how you are made..it is a thing that happens to you… when a child loves you for a long long time…then you become real… It doesn’t happen all at once.. generally by the time you become real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand” These were the values my mother wanted to teach me.That a heart that was beautiful and true was so much more valuable than being slick and impressive on the outside. ” Man looks on the outside but God looks on the heart”( 1 Samuel 16 v 7)

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