4-Year-Old Boy Teaches His Dad A Life Lesson

We may face a number of difficulties in life but perhaps one of the difficulties most children face is when their parents get older. It seems as if they suddenly go from being the person that takes care of the child to being unable to take care of themselves. If you have ever had to care for an aging parent, you realize that it is a lot of work but there are also some rewards that go along with it. It’s not something that everybody can do, but when you do it, it’s important to do it in style. That is what this son didn’t understand, but he got taught a lesson from a most unexpected place that he will never forget.

A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and a four-year-old grandson. The old man’s hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered. The family ate together nightly at the dinner table.

But the elderly grandfather’s shaky hands and failing sight made eating rather difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor. When he grasped the glass often milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. We must do something about grandfather, said the son. “I’ve had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor.”

So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner. There, grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner at the dinner table. Since grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl. Sometimes when the family glanced in grandfather’s direction, he had a tear in his eye as he ate alone. Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food. The four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, What are you making?

Just as sweetly, the boy responded, Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and mama to eat your food from when I grow up. The four-year-old smiled and went back to work. The words so struck the parents that they were speechless.

Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done. That evening the husband took grandfather’s hand and gently led him back to the family table.

For the remainder of his days, he ate every meal with the family. And for some reason, neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled.

Take care of yourself and those you love, today, and every day!

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