The Unexpected Gift


by Tonya Allen

A married lady was expecting a birthday gift from her husband. For many months she had admired a beautiful diamond ring in a showroom, and knowing her husband could afford it, she told him that was all she wanted. As her birthday approached, this lady awaited signs that her husband had purchased the diamond ring. Finally, on the morning of her birthday, her husband called her into his study. Her husband told her how proud he was to have such a good wife, and told her how much he loved her. He handed her a beautiful wrapped gift box. Curious, the wife opened the box and found a lovely, leather-bound Bible, with the wife’s name embossed in gold. Angrily, she raised her voice to her husband and said, “With all your money you give me a Bible? and stormed out of the house, leaving her husband.

Many years passed and the married lady was very successful in business. She managed to settle for a more beautiful house and a wonderful family, but realized her ex-husband was very old, and thought perhaps she should go to visit him. She had not seen him for many years. But before she could make arrangements, she received a telegram telling her that her ex-husband had passed away, and willed all of his possessions to her. She needed to come back immediately and take care of things. When she arrived at her ex-husband’s house, sudden sadness and regret filled her heart. She began to search through her ex-husband’s important papers and saw the still new Bible, just as she had left it years ago.

With tears, she opened the Bible and began to turn the pages. Her ex-husband had carefully underlined a verse, Matt 7:11, “And if you, being evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father which is in heaven, give to those who ask Him?”

As she read those words, a tiny package dropped from the back of the Bible. It had a diamond ring with her name engraved on it, the same diamond ring which she saw at the showroom. On the tag was the date of her birth, and the words…’LUV U LWAYS…Even Unto The End.’

How many times do we miss God’s blessings because they are not packaged as we expected? Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; but remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.


After reading this story. I immediately thought about my marriage and how each marriage is an unexpected gift. When I met my husband we were two broke college students away from home struggling. We were both from broken homes with mothers working hard to provide for us. He needed a haircut and I needed a perm. It is amazing that even though neither one of us was looking our best we each saw something in the other. In him I saw hope and in me he saw stability. We were able to provide the other with the missing element in our lives.

That is the way God works. The best blessings are the ones you are not looking for. They kind of sneak up on you. The day I met my husband I wasn’t looking for a husband, I wasn’t even looking for a boyfriend. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even like my husband at first. I thought he was a know it all who had an opinion about everything. Well, this still describes him quite well 25 years later. My point is if I had judged him by his first impression I would have never discovered what a loving and protective spirit he has. I would have thrown away a wonderful unexpected gift. I thank God that he forced me to slow down and gradually unwrap the gift that was before me.

My husband and I dated for three years before we married. We got to know each other quite well, he knew that I was determined and persistent, okay, I admit it, stubborn and pig-headed. We knew that we were not perfect and we learn how to deal with it. Most importantly, we learn how to appreciate every unexpected gift by taking the time to slowly admire the gift wrapping and cherish what is inside.

Tonya Allen

Tonya can be reached at [email protected].  Tonya and her husband Robert were Married Couples Ministry leaders for 16 years at Freewill Missionary Baptist Church, Montgomery, Alabama.

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