The Gift

Juni Desireé Hoel’s story The Gift was published recently in our 2021 anthology The Labyrinth and other stories of life. It is about the her struggle to make friends when she moved to a new town. Feeling despondent, she sat at the beach when she received an unexpected gift. She shared the photo above with us and wrote:

I love this picture because it captures how God spoke to me through this little boy and his present. He was a complete stranger who answered my prayer. I’d only just written in my journal if I should keep putting myself out there. I wanted to be an encouragement to people but I always felt so socially awkward and had a fear of rejection. Then this little boy sat opposite me and he awkwardly brushed sand off the table and didn’t look at me or say anything when I said hi to him. And yet he reached out in his own way and gave me a seed, ‘a present.’ It showed me that God was saying: ‘Yes, keep putting yourself out there even though it’s awkward and scary. Because it just might give someone something they need.’ Just like this boy gave me what I needed. The encouragement to keep putting myself out there like he did. 

From us at Stories of Life to you: May you daily experience God’s goodness and have a hope-filled new year!