The Forgotten Diamond
Ashley turned the beautiful stone over and over again in her hand. “Are you really giving this to me?” she whispered in awe and wonder. The thought that her father was giving her this priceless diamond seemed almost too much to comprehend.
“Yes, my darling daughter, I am giving you that diamond. Love and cherish it, and keep it ever in your thoughts.”
Ashley threw her arms around her father’s neck. How she loved him! She couldn’t imagine life without his love.
For the first several months after Ashley’s father gave her the diamond, she guarded the diamond as she would her own life. She spent hours gazing upon it, then went and told everyone she knew about her father’s marvellous love. Her heart of gratitude showed in everything she did. She was kind and loving toward others because her thoughts were focused on her father’s kindness to her. She was always eager to serve and praise her father because her thoughts were completely consumed with him.
I’d like to stop here and say that Ashley faithfully treasured her diamond for the rest of her life and continually lived in the same joy she had those first few weeks. But I’m afraid that would not be true. Ever so gradually, Ashley began to become accustomed to the diamond she’d been given. Although the diamond itself never diminished in value one bit, she stopped thinking of it as much throughout her day. While she was still kind toward others and told others of her father’s love, she did so more from habit and duty than from gratitude and joy. Her words sounded like hollow recitations instead of heartfelt realities.
“Ashley, can I talk with you?” Ashley’s friend Eliza asked one afternoon.
“Of course,” Ashley replied, wondering what Eliza could want.
“The diamond your father gave you—can you describe it to me? And can you tell me what that diamond means to you?”
“Why, of course I can,” Ashley replied. She stumbled through a description that sounded strangely vague even to her.
Ashley’s encounter with Eliza awakened Ashley’s sleeping conscience. I have forgotten to gaze upon the diamond my father gave me! I’ve forgotten to let it bring me joy. Saddened at her folly, Ashley slowly walked upstairs and knocked on her father’s study. One look at her father’s face showed Ashley that he already knew how she had neglected his treasure.
“Come, my dear, let’s go look at the diamond again together,” he said as he gently wiped her tears.
With that, Ashley’s father led her to the special case in which she kept her diamond. Ashley broke into a fresh set of tears when she saw the diamond. She had forgotten how beautifully it glittered and glistened! Her heart felt overwhelmed once again by the incredible gift that her father had given her.
“Oh, Father, please help me to never forget!” she whispered, looking up in love and admiration into her father’s face. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.” Matthew 13:44