Just the Way You Are, by Max Lucado ISBN 0439210674
Five out of five stars
This is another children’s book from Max Lucado that contains a powerful message. In a more primitive time, five orphans live in a village. For mutual support and protection, the five siblings had banded together. The village was in a kingdom and when the king learned of their plight, he announced that he would adopt them and would be coming to take them away.
That announcement was met with great excitement and the children all decided to work very hard at honing their skills in order to impress the king. One of the boys was an accomplished woodcarver, so he set out to create an astounding item of wood art. One of his sisters was a painter, so she began developing what she planned to be a masterpiece. Another one of the girls was a musician and she sat down and relentlessly practiced on her violin and mandolin. A brother was a scholar, so he buried himself in studying all areas in depth.
That left one girl that had neither of those skills. She was clumsy and no other recognizable skills. However, she was very sociable and spent a great deal of time greeting new arrivals to the village, asking questions about their travels. She made no distinction between the rich and poor, she talked to everyone.
One day, a rather nondescript man arrived at the village. He was alone and he wore standard clothing and was riding a basic donkey, The girl was very kind to him, giving him what assistance she could, sitting with him while he rested for a few minutes. The man then left to visit some people and he found them too busy to talk with him. He then returned to the girl and revealed that he was in fact the king. He told the girl that she was very special, for she had a kind and sympathetic heart.
The message is of course that even if it seems that you have nothing else to offer, expressing a kind and generous heart is something that nearly all people appreciate. It is a great story that will touch the hearts of people of all ages.