The Ultimate Gift

December 24th..

The most amazing day of the year in my childlike heart.

Christmas Eve would not come soon enough. The weeks leading up to this moment in the year were filled with times of experience in the magic as I would call it. Red, blue, green, and yellow Christmas lights we’re hung by my grandpa dressed in very clean gray thin striped coveralls accompanied by rubber boots, balancing with much assurance on a frosty metal silver folding ladder, each light placed with perfection on the 1960s farmhouse. The colors in the crisp white snow danced as though it were a wonderful piece of art on display.

The perfectly shoveled path led to the front door where all the wonders of Christmas continued behind it as I stepped through it, smelling of all the goodness of Christmas as I remembered it.

White Grandma cookies with marshmallow topping toasted with coconut, cottage cheese fruit salad, colorful broken glass cake, among many other mouthwatering Christmas aromas blanketed the house everywhere my young self moved.

Rounding the corner into the living room of the farm bungalow, I’d enter to the Christmas sounds of Jack Benny and Doris day, Anne Murray, Heinche, John Denver and many many other over the course of the holiday season.

The artificial Blue Spruce Christmas tree sparkling with strands of evenly placed multi-colored lights and shining teardrop and round decorations wrapped in silver tinsel and garland, painted a postcard picture of Christmas like I’d seen in the five cent to Dollar Store on our frequent visits there.

The tree was perfectly placed in front of the wooden living room door. The gifts placed under the branches were wrapped in the gold, silver, reds, and blues tied with shiny ribbons. No name tags would grace the presents, only strategically placed initials placed by grandma that not even she could find at times.

Family would slowly trickle into the door after the Christmas Eve program had ended in our local hometown Church.

The excitement in my heart would continue with anticipation.

The time had come I had waited for all year… The whole family was home.

Some found spots on the blue 1960’s couch draped with a blanket graced with a family of deer. Others, on the moss green sculpted rug. The corner golden yellow rocker was always reserved for Grandpa as grandma didn’t need a chair as she was running around more often than not making sure everything was taken care of.

The tradition of gift-giving for all young or old, was a process that took well into the night and was a thrill to my young heart as I experienced the warmth and love each gift came with.

This beautiful time would sometimes continue until 4am dotted with Christmas snack breaks at the family table that had been beautifully decorated with its candles, chocolate, ripple chips, french onion soup dip and Pepsi along with the traditional halva..my favourite.

The sights.. the sounds… the laughter… The Joy… the family…

A gift infinitely bigger than all the gifts under the tree even then in my young child’s heart.

I cannot imagine having had to stand outside the living room window in the cold of winter looking in… how sad I would have been not to be able to enjoy this intimate experience in all its fullness.

It reminds me of my relationship with my God. For many years I stayed on the outside of that “living room window” out in the cold only catching a glimpse of the Majestic wonder of the experience I was missing out on.

The Ultimate Gift.

The intimate personal relationship and experience with my God…now finding it on ” the bench”.

The beautiful gifts under the tree where the blessings sitting and waiting for me to come in and open them, the Abundant Life and all his promises beckoning me from the Christmas family table he so wanted me to have and enjoy.

He was longing for this intimate relationship…always inviting me like the gentleman He is.

How sad to have left those gifts unopened.

Many years later, many Christmases later, being graced with being a grandma already, I still look forward with anticipation to passing on pieces of those early majestic Christmas memories to my children grandchildren’s hearts.

But in all of this my heart’s biggest prayer is that they will find The Ultimate Gift.

The blessings, Abundant Life, the promises. But most of all the gift of Him who came from above and the personal relationship that they are invited to experience inside the “living room window” ..

The Ultimate Gift♥️♥️

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