This was sent to me today and I want to share it will you.

I was at the corner grocery store
buying some early potatoes... I noticed a small boy,
delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily
apprising a basket of freshly picked green
I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the
display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover
for creamed peas and new potatoes.
Pondering the peas, I couldn't help
overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store
owner) and the ragged boy next to me.
'Hello Barry, how are you today?'
'H'lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya.
Jus' admirin' them peas. They sure look 
'They are good, Barry. How's your Ma?'
'Fine. Gittin' stronger alla' time.'
Anything I can help you with?'
'No, Sir. Jus' admirin' them peas.'
'Would you like to take some home?' asked Mr.
'No, Sir. Got nuthin' to pay for 'em
'Well, what have you to trade me for
some of those peas?'
'All I got's my prize marble here.'
'Is that right? Let me see it', said
'Here 'tis. She's a dandy.'
'I can see that. Hmm mmm, only thing is this one is blue and
I sort of go for red. Do you have a
red one like this at home?' the store owner asked.
'Not zackley but almost.'
'Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you
and next trip this way let me look at
that red marble'. Mr. Miller told the boy.
'Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.'
Mrs. Miller, who had been standing
nearby, came over to help me.
With a smile she said, 'There are two other boys like
him in our community, all three are in
very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them
for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever.
When they come back with their red marbles, and
they always do, he decides he doesn't like red
after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a
green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next
trip to the store.'
I left the store smiling to myself, impressed
with this man. A short time later I moved to
Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the
boys, and their bartering for marbles. 
Several years went by, each more rapid than the
previous one. Just recently I had occasion to
visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I
was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having
his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to
go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary
we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and
to offer whatever words of comfort we could.
Ahead of us in line were three young men.
One was in an army uniform and the other
two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts...all very
professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing
composed and smiling by her husband's casket.
Each of the young men hugged her, kissed
on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and
moved on to the casket. Her misty light blue
eyes followed them as,
one by one; each young man stopped briefly and placed his
own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each
left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his
Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller.
I told her who I was and reminded her
of the story from those many years ago and what
she had told me about her husband's 

bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my
hand and led me to the casket.
'Those three young men who just left were
the boys I told you about.
They just told me how they appreciated the things
Jim 'traded' them. Now, at last, when
Jim could not change his mind about color or size.....they
came to pay their debt.'
'We've never had a great deal of the wealth
of this world,' she confided, 'but right now, Jim
would consider himself the richest man in Idaho
With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless
fingers of her deceased husband... Resting
underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.
The Moral:
We will not be remembered by our words,
but by our kind deeds. Life is not
measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that
take our breath.
Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles ~
A fresh pot of coffee you didn't make
An unexpected phone call from an old friend....
Green traffic lights on your way to
The fastest line at the grocery
A good sing-along song on the
Your keys found right where you left
Send this to the people you'll never
forget. I just did...
If you don't send it to anyone, it
means you are in way too much of a hurry to even notice the
ordinary miracles when they occur.

Tweet: It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.

Image courtesy of Maggie Smith /

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