On Sunday in the Sanctuary our worship was focused on both the palms and the passion. We had the live donkey and the children dressed up. The choir sang, and four readers and a dancer and the congregation participated in a worship experience called "The Cry of the Whole Congregation." (There was a drum and a drummer, and they were also not optional.)
In the fellowship hall was our annual fundraiser for social justice issues, a brunch, a silent auction and cake walk. People from the church created baskets to be auctioned, and there were cakes and cakes and cakes. (I won a a yellow cake with chocolate frosting, baked by an 11-year-old girl.)
Two little pre-school girls was determined to win a cake. They walked in circles for what seemed like an eternity, but neither of them won a cake. One girl's grandmother whispered to the children's ministry coordinator, "I don't know what we'll do if she doesn't eventually win one!"
At the same time, a little boy, eight years old, had won four cakes. His mother was beside herself. What were they going to do with four cakes!?
The children's ministry coordinator made a discreet suggestion. The little boy gave a whole box of cupcakes to the two little girls. You could see them jumping up and down and yelling, "We won! We won! We won!" (one of the mothers smiled with a little irony: of course they didn't WIN. Someone took pity on them and gave them a cake.)
The little boy was so startled by the girls' reaction that he went around the fellowship hall the rest of the morning, asking anyone if they wanted a cake.
As for me, give me grace to recognize that a free gift is a different, and maybe better, way to win in life.