Cecil Combs, Principal Jessie Clark Middle School

October 31, 2014

Gifts From the Heart

According to legend, a young man while roaming the desert came across a spring of delicious crystal-clear water. The water was so sweet he filled his leather canteen so he could bring some back to a tribal elder who had been his teacher. After a four-day journey he presented the water to the old man who took a deep drink, smiled warmly and thanked his student lavishly for the sweet water. The young man returned to his village with a happy heart.

Later, the teacher let another student taste the water. He spat it out, saying it was awful. It apparently had become stale because of the old leather container. The student challenged his teacher: "Master, the water was foul. Why did you pretend to like it?"

The teacher replied, "You only tasted the water. I tasted the gift. The water was simply the container for an act of loving-kindness and nothing could be sweeter."

I think we understand this lesson best when we receive innocent gifts of love from young children. Whether it's a ceramic tray or a macaroni bracelet, the natural and proper response is appreciation and expressed thankfulness because we love the idea within the gift.

Gratitude doesn't always come naturally. Unfortunately, most children and many adults value only the thing given rather than the feeling embodied in it. We should remind ourselves and teach our children about the beauty and purity of feelings and expressions of gratitude. After all, gifts from the heart are really gifts of the heart.


November 3 Committee Meetings

November 3 Woodford County Staff Visit

November 3 Lady Eagles Basketball vs E.J. Hayes 5:30 pm

November 4 Election Day - No School

November 5 Lady Eagles Basketball @ Bryan Station 5:30 pm

November 6 Leadership Team Meeting 7:45 am

November 6 JCMS Band Fall Concert

November 6 Eagles Football 1st Round Playoff

November 6 BETA Club Meeting 4:00 pm

November 7 Data Analysis Team Meetings 4th, 5th, 6th periods

November 10 SBDM 5:00 pm

November 11 Faculty Meeting 4:15 pm

November 12 Lady Eagles Basketball @ Beaumont 5:30 pm


  • SPIRIT has landed with Mr. Gabe Brown. Mrs. Withrow had this to say;

    He is not only an inspiration to me as someone new to JCMS, but such a wonderful role model to the students. Gabe remains positive and professional through tough situations, with both adults and kids. He puts kids first and is dedicated to his job. Thank you Gabe for all you do!