There once was a ten year old boy who was being raised, along with his brothers, by his grandmother. She tried her best, but she was disabled and times were hard.
Their tiny rented house was literally falling down around them and he would never invite friends over to play, because he was too embarrassed for them to see where he lived.
The boy's clothes were too small and too few. There were no toys in sight, as these were only luxuries that his friends had, but never him.
Until one day, a beautiful lady entered the house. Like a fairy godmother, she helped the family find a more suitable home. She cleaned it, mowed the grass, and filled the home with special touches.
The house was almost ready for the family to move in. When the lady asked the boy what he would want most in the house, assuming he would ask for toys and such, she was stunned by his answer.
His one wish - a dining table.
His family had never had a table to eat on. He wanted to gather his family and sit around a table to have their meals, to laugh, and to share about their day. Mostly, to have a time of coming together.
That wonderful lady fulfilled his wish of a table, and in addition, a complete house of furniture and all bedding needed for the house. Some she bought herself, and for the rest, she worked and worked until she had enough donated for the cause. She even brought toys and clothes for the family. When the family moved in, they were incredibly thankful.
The little boy spoke few words, but you could see he held his head a little higher after that day. And he gathered his family around that wooden table.
How long has it been since we've gathered our families? Held hands and said grace? Laughed and cried together?
Never underestimate the power of the gathering of a family around a dinner table, big or small, fancy or plain, especially in the eyes of a child.
Or the magic of stopping our busy lives to notice someone else.