I recently read a blog from a blogging “sister” reflecting on a Christmas years ago when her family was down and out. “The Seven Days of Christmas” is a story that will always be a bright star in our family’s album of memories.
My son was seven and had just given me his very small list of things he wanted for Christmas. We were in full-time ministry and were grateful when we could scape money together, every month, to pay the bills. Extra money was spent on things like socks, shoes, shampoo. My eyes glistened as I looked at his skimpy list. A tractor, a candy cane, a warm jacket. He added a longer list for his little sister. My husband had just told me that Christmas, including the turkey, tree and trimmings, was cancelled. The tax man didn’t take into account that we were living below the poverty level.
That night we told the kids that Christmas would be very simple this year even the baby in my stomach heard the news. My son, though young, had an amazing faith. That night he prayed to God for a special Christmas for his sister and his parents. If God would give him one toy, he would be happy.
Our ministry was cranking up with lots of needs. We were encouraged by the generosity of people as they provided food, clothes, and gifts for the poor in our community. Seven days before Christmas, my husband went to the office as usual. There on his desk was an envelope with an anonymous check inside. Later that same day, a volunteer handed my husband several hundred-dollar bills. “Now this is for your family not the ministry.” Day two: As we were putting the children to bed, we heard the doorbell ring. What was strange was the bell never worked. When we opened the door, my husband and I saw a porch filled with gifts. Day three: My husband comes into the kitchen with his hands behind his back “pick a hand honey.” I choose the left. In his left hand are five one hundred-dollar bills. “Pick again” My eyes start to fill up. In his right hand are keys to a car. With a baby a month away, our family was in need of a larger car. One family donated their used car specifically to our growing family. I could go on and on with the delights that each of the seven days brought.
On Christmas Eve, after putting the kids to bed , we pulled all the gifts out of hiding and put them under the Christmas tree. Yes the tree was another anonymous gift. There were so many gifts that they spilled into our entryway. The smells from the kitchen reflected the abundance of food we were given; there was so much that we were able to help out another family and give several turkeys to a friend’s food pantry. The taxes were paid by the anonymous monetary gifts that we received. We looked at all the gifts that we had been given in overwhelmed silence. A few tears spilled over into our entryway as well. When our son came out that Christmas morning, he said “Wow -I prayed for this but God went way overboard.”
I think my son said it the best – God went way overboard when He sent the greatest gift He could give – Jesus.
May you be reminded what we are celebrating this Christmas. Be a blessing this Christmas ; you never know how lives may be touched. If you have” little”, take from the greatest gift giver the world has ever known.
Merry Christmas to all of you who visit this blog