E-Pao! Essay - My Birthday Gift

My Birthday Gift

Sang Valte *

Long time ago I was given a birthday present. a present that I can never receive but once. Though it was the best gift I could ever get I didn't know what it really was.

It was for free so I thought it was of little value and must be cheap. May be that was why I thought I could afford to get one on my own, somewhere - somehow.

I have it with me for twenty years now. The fascinating thing is that it grows more and more complicated each year. Within these twenty years there was never a time when I could fully understand what it is.

There are times when I wish I could just throw it away. Other times I wish I never had it. That's not all.

There are also times when I am so happy with it that I wish I could have it and hold on to it for eternity. But most of the time I was so disturbed by its complicatedness that I forget to appreciate the good things in it. That's when I expect too much from it.

Sometimes I just wonder why this present was ever given to me. Why was I given such a present that I have a hard time understanding it. Who, in the whole universe, could be that rude to ever give such a present as a birthday gift to anybody?

Rather than that what makes me more sad is to realize that I can't have it for ever. All the hardships I had faced trying to understand this present will all be gone someday. Then why should I even care? It's not mine anyway.

But then, I learn that it was not for free. who ever said it was for free? It was given to me out of love. not because of rudeness. If it was, then, bought with a price and then was given to me then it must have worth something. So I give a thought about it and make it a point that I should find out why I ever thought it was for free.

I find out that it was because I took it for granted. It never was priceless though it was given to me for free. As a matter of fact, feels frightening to learn that it was bought with somebody's blood.

Somebody actually had to sacrifice His son for me and buy me a gift with His son's blood.

In fact, this present was never mine though it fell into my hands. I never own it because I have not quite earned it. I have no right to claim it as mine. If it's not mine and I have it with me then it was lended to me. That means sooner or later I will have to return it; that's what I've realized lately.

The truth is He can take it back anytime. I was never told I could have it for as long as I want. eventually, I will have to return it to Him.

Then, what I can do, now, is to get the best out of it before He take it back.

Make use of it, guard it and take care of it. Return it to Him as good as new that on that day He may give me a better one that will last for eternity.

Thank you God for this birthday present - this life.

Sang Valte contributes regularly to, this article was written on the eve of his birthday!
You can email the writer at
He has a very active personal website at
This article was webcasted on 23rd March 2005.

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