A Christmas Story

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Once upon a snowy Christmas Eve young Emily sat snuggled up in the crook of her grandma’s arm. The open fire sizzled and popped, sometimes spewing a few sparks onto the black speckled linoleum. Emily pulled her special fuzzy blanket, the one imprinted with hundreds of kitty cats up under her chin. Emily loved cats. The room was warm, but Emily snuggled anyway. She always felt safe and loved when she was with her grandma she called Gigi.


“Gigi, do you believe in Santa Claus?” Emily asked.


“Well of course I believe in Santa. Why in the world wouldn’t I?”


“Mama’s friend said he stopped believing in Santa when he was eight years old. I’ll be eight next year, so will I have to stop believing too?”


Grandma Gigi tilted her precious, and only granddaughter’s chin up so the twinkle in their eyes could mingle. “Let me tell you a story Emily.”



***


A long, long time ago there were two sisters. The youngest one was about the same age as you are now. The other one was four years older. Their names were Abigail and Sarah.


On a cold winter’s evening three nights before Christmas they crawled under the covers and snuggled up back to back, putting the bottoms of their feet together to warm themselves. Soon their giggles turned into yawns and young Sarah sleepily told her big sister that she couldn’t wait for Santa to come.


“Surely you don’t still believe there is a Santa Claus do you?” Abigail said.


“Yes, I do. Don’t you?”


“No! There is no such thing. It’s all a myth.”


“But how do the presents appear on Christmas morning.”


“Presents? You mean the hand-me-downs and stick candy?”


“Yes. I can’t wait.”


The girl’s kept bantering back and forth. But Abigail never convinced Sarah that Santa wasn’t real. Sarah went to sleep and dreamed of a magical place called the North Pole and of a special man who lived there with his elves… Abigail had no dreams.



***


“Gigi, your name is Sarah. Is this story about you?”


Yes. Emily it is. When I was about your age there were all kinds of things that happened that should have proved to me that there really isn’t a Santa. But you know what? I never stopped believing. Even now as an old lady I believe. Do you know why Emily?”


“Why Gigi?”


“Well that year when my sister Abigail stopped believing in Santa she lost her joy. There was no excitement in her eyes and she was sad all the time. What really scared me was that she never really got that joy back. When it snowed it was always a yucky mess to her while to me it was a winter wonderland of beauty and peace. As we grew older things that should have made her happy seemed to irritate her. If someone spoke a friendly word to her she was suspicious and wondered what they wanted. As I watched my sister I made myself a promise that I would never stop believing in the splendor of Christmas.”


“Does Santa really have reindeer and a magic sack?” Emily asked.


“Well I really don’t know, but I do know who Santa’s boss is.”


“Santa has a boss? Who?”


“God. He is the ruler of all things, big and small, real or imagined. And, I believe that if He wants Santa to miraculously appear with his reindeer He can. Or, if He wants to magically place gifts under the tree then that’s what He will do.”


“My believing in Christmas is not the fact that I believe there really is, or is not a Santa. It’s the reality of what happened over two thousand years ago in Bethlehem. I believe that a tiny baby named Jesus was born to Mary and that He came into this world to save us from our sins and to bring us peace and joy. He came that all who believe will have everlasting life.”


“Do I believe in the magic of Christmas? Oh, yes, one hundred percent. And not only the spell bound charm of Santa but the beauty and wonder of everyday. I never want to stop believing that God can do whatever He wants. Jesus is Christmas. And, if we stop believing then we have nothing. No joy, no love, no peace, no life. So my advice to you little lady is to always believe and look for the good in every thing.”


The End



Author’s note:

I hope you all believe in the wonder of Christmas and that you never lose your joy. For Jesus came to us as an innocent baby and died for us an innocent man; that we all might find peace in a turbulent world, and everlasting life in heaven. Yes, it’s hard to believe in what we can’t see or touch. But the best things in life are not the material stuff we hold in our hands. It’s what we feel in our hearts. You just have to close your eyes and believe.


Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.




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