Early in 2013, as the second anniversary of the accident that took my wife and daughter approached, I was trying to find something special to do to honor the birth of Miranda. My daughter was a special gift to me, our families, and the world. In birth, life, and death, she had value. I had already planned to do a balloon launch on her birthday, but I wanted to try to find some other way to remember her, too. A way that would reach out to other people. A way that would celebrate the gift that she was and continues to be. As I contemplated her legacy, I felt the best way to both honor her memory and celebrate her birth and life would be to provide a special blessing for others.
I do not believe the idea that finally came into fruition was an accident. It came to me as I was driving to church, about two weeks before Miranda's birthday. Pastor Mark Van Valin had started the year off preaching a sermon series focused on generosity. As I drove to church that morning, I was blessed with the idea of starting a tradition of giving an anonymous Miranda Gift. That first year, I decided it should be given to someone I don't know, someone who doesn't know me, a random mother/father and/or child.
That same afternoon, I created an event for the Miranda Gift
on Facebook and invited my family and close friends. They invited their family and friends. The next thing I knew there were nearly 500 people indicating they were going to give a Miranda Gift to a stranger, too. The response alone was overwhelming, what happened on February 5 was even more astounding. As the day wore on, recipients of Miranda Gifts began to find the Facebook event and post on the event timeline. Stories of elated surprise, needs being met, thankfulness, and lives being valued just because they exist.
The gift of kindness, purposeful generosity, never gets old, it never harms, it never demeans, and it knows no limits. I firmly believe my Lord and Savior called us to love one another. Please join me in celebrating this special day and give a Miranda Gift to someone in your community.