A Christmas Story
This is one of those mushy days for me. I am on treatment and it is really giving me a fit and making me sick and emotional but that is ok. I believe Christmas is about emotions and love and joy and all of those things. So, I wanted to tell a story from when my boys were young….a very special story of two young boys who had more giving in their hearts than even I imagined.
I was keeping the three young kids of a friend of mine who was in drug rehab and had them for a couple of months total. I did not mind because my whole life and the life of my sons has been that of giving and helping others. It is what we do. But Christmas time can make things difficult especially when the kids came to me right before Christmas. My boys were in the elementary grades and had already seen their gifts under the tree. They did not know what their gifts were but they knew which ones were theirs. It was a few days before Christmas and I was wondering what I was going to do to make Christmas special for these three kids who were also in our home without taking away from my sons and their Christmas.
People ask me do I believe in Santa Claus and my answer is always “YES” for I do. See, I believe Santa lies in the heart of people and for me, Santa is really the same one that has taken care of me all these years and provided for my boys and I when we needed things and sometimes just when we wanted things. Christmas is about Christ and Christ was the greatest gift of all. And so I said my prayers and just kept waiting.
Christmas day, my sons showed me that they had more generous hearts than even I knew they had. Christmas Eve came and I had managed to put some little things under the tree for the children such as coloring crayons, cookies, etc. And so I went to bed that night yearning for more to give them so that they would not feel left out. I could not take away from my children but I certainly wished for more.
The next morning I had five boys sitting on my bed waiting on me to wake up. I open my eyes and saw such beautiful innocence in them all and they asked could they go see what they got under the tree. With a prayer and tears in the back of my eyes, I told them yes and we all went to the living room. And under the tree were FIVE equal piles of gifts with a stocking on top of each pile. I stood there looking and tears were just rolling down my cheeks. The little ones asked whose pile was whose? And my sons said that they thought “Santa” had put their names on the stockings so they would know. And sure enough, the five stockings each had a child’s name in glitter on the top.
I looked at my boys and I knew what they had done. After the three younger ones went to bed, they had stayed up, fixed three more stockings and opened all their presents carefully to see what they were re-wrapped them and then divided them between all five of them so that the three boys would not be left out. Oh the squeals of joy and laughter I heard as they opened their presents and I said a silent prayer of thanks to my Creator for giving us such a wonderful gift of Christ and for giving our little house such a beautiful..equal…Christmas for my boys and those three boys of my friend. And I said an extra thank you to my two beautiful sons who showed such generosity to be so young. I also was filled to the brim as I watched my two sons show the other three how to work or put together their presents that “Santa” had brought them….presents that were for my sons to open Christmas morning and yet they seemed to be getting such joy in giving them to someone else who had less.
And my gift you ask? My gift was and always has been in giving and in seeing my sons give so generously. Giving is a gift itself and one that fills my heart. So many this year will do without. So many will be alone for the holidays and so many will eat alone. Maybe this year more people will open their hearts, their purses and their homes to make Christmas special for those around them.
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