Written In Memory of Mom and Dad
Remember the days of old, consider the years long past; ask you father, and he will inform you; your elders, and they will tell you.” Deuteronomy 32:7
It was the depression, and they were celebrating their first Christmas together. They saved their money and bought me at a store in Larned, Kansas. They placed me on the top of a cedar tree that the young man cut from the shelter belt. The tree was placed in a bucket of sand and positioned in the window seat.
They couldn’t afford gifts for each other, but they were together and so in love. They counted their pennies and bought a nativity set with a blue light and placed it in the corner of the room. After all, that was what Christmas was all about. Years later, the tree was dressed with bubble lights and tinsel carefully placed one strand at a time. I was lovingly packed away until the next Christmas.
The holidays became more fun when the couple had children. Under the tree there would be Lincoln logs, dolls, doll houses, little tin barns and animals, toy telephones and even a sled they could ride in the snow. Santa always came to visit when the man went to the barn to milk the cows. He missed seeing Santa every year.
As the children grew, the gifts under the tree changed to clothes, horses, stereos, and albums from Elvis Presley, the Lettermen, and Ricky Nelson. Santa quit visiting. They no longer had a cedar tree but bought a silver tinsel tree and a color wheel that changed from red, green, yellow, and blue as the wheel turned. I was still placed on the top, but the bubble lights and tinsel were packed away.
The children left home and the couple went south for the winter. When the middle child got married, she dug me, the bubble lights, and the little nativity set out of the closet. We now had a new home. We were placed on an artificial green tree.
Soon there were two little boys. Under the tree were GI Joes and Star Wars and radio-controlled cars. Santa never visited this house, but the little boys thought he came every year when they went to the Christmas Eve service. The older couple that bought me 50 years ago were very feeble but managed to spend the holiday with their kids and grandkids. They loved seeing me on the top of the tree. It brought back memories of their early life together and the deep love they had for each other and their family.
After spending 59 years together, the elderly lady, who I had shared Christmas with for years, was now all alone. She shed tears because she missed him so much. However, she spent the holiday with the kids and grandkids and tried to act happy.
It is 2011 and this year the elderly couple are together again and enjoying God’s choir of real angels. I will spend the holiday on a fibroptic tree, but I am no longer stored in a closet.
I spend all year long sitting in the middle child’s office, and she smiles and talks to me about what Christmas really is… The tears that will be shed this year are because of memories of past Christmases. How they will miss the couple that bought me 78 years ago! The most important thing to her is having family close by and children and grandchildren that are healthy and happy…their church family that is there for them when their real family is not close by…the true meaning of Christmas…the importance of giving instead of receiving…and the birth of the Christ child, God’s gift to us.
Prayer: Dear Father, Thanks for the parents you picked for me. Thank you for the deep love they showed each other and demonstrated to us. May we all have that kind of love in our lives. Thank you for the angel’s story and for Your angels that watch over us. Amen
That all throughout the world will know the true meaning of Christmas – God’s gift to us, the Christ child.