"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope." Jer. 29:11

The Gift

>> Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I cuddled under a plaid blanket on the sofa sipping a caramel latte. The morning light glowed through the window framing the snow that had fallen during the night.

My eyes roamed to the Christmas tree dressed in all of its finery. I lowered my gaze to one particular gift beneath it, wrapped in red foil and topped with a crystal angel that seemed to promise something special inside.

“Oh, Deidra, are you going to open it?” Skye waltzed into the room with her hands clasped around a mug.

I made room for my sister and shared the warmth of the cover. “Should I accept a gift from Phillip?”

“Well, it is Christmas.”

“But I’m not interested in him. I wouldn’t want to give him the wrong idea.” I moved from my cocoon and picked up the present, musical notes sounded from inside. I wanted to open it, but I ... I wasn’t sure.

“How can you turn it down?”

“Skye, give it a rest. Besides I need to rush, I want to stop for donuts on the way to work.” I scurried out of the room and dressed for the day ahead. Outside, even with gloves and boots the frigid air stole my breath. Inside the car I cranked up the heater.

When I walked in the office door Phillip cast a look my way.  Oh, great. With any luck he would go to his office—maybe he had some projects to finish. After all, the graphic designers seldom mixed with the front office employees. 

“Ah, donuts.” Tammy took a closer look.

We gathered around the reception desk with our coffee, biting into the sugary circles.

“Deidra, did you open the gift?” Kari licked lemon filling from her fingertip.

“What was it?” Melinda reached into the pink box.

“Tammy. You told.” I tossed her a frown.

She rolled her eyes. “What’s the big deal?”

Opinions flew—talking over one another. “Enough. He might hear us.” Annoyed, I stormed to the coffee room. I didn’t notice Phillip until I entered, trapped.

He pushed the glass carafe toward me. “Refill?” His smile startled my pulse.

My hand trembled as I pushed my cup forward. “Thanks. I’m freezing.” The words came out mumbled—I’m sure he thought I’d lost all sanity.

“I happened to see a little something I thought you’d enjoy. Sure, I’d like to get to know you better. But there’s no hidden meaning attached to it.” 

“Thanks. It was really nice of you.” I tossed him a slight smile and hurried to my desk where I tackled a few emails that needed my attention. We had a long weekend and we were leaving early today, for Christmas Eve.

The office closed at noon. Excited I scraped the snow off the car windows and began the tedious trek to my street, hoping to get there before Skye.

The house appeared quiet as I pulled into the driveway. I made a dash for the front door. Without removing my coat, I started a fire in the hearth and tried to stop shivering.

Unable to wait any longer I knelt next to the tree. My heart beat faster as I untied the gold ribbon and folded back the shiny paper. I held the small glass angel and watched it sparkle in the firelight. 

“Oh, you’re opening it!” Skye clapped her hands.

“The shop is already closed?” 

“Yeah, I closed the doors early for Christmas Eve.” She lowered onto the carpet beside me as I opened the box and removed the red tissue paper from inside.

“A snow globe!” I turned the winder and music chimed. Inside the glass glistening snow fell on a little Church. “Look! The cross on top of the steeple lights up.”

“I recall ignoring God's gift. But when I finally opened my heart Jesus forgave my sins and filled me with His love. He changed my life." Skye brushed a tear away. "He gave me the gift of His son, Emanuel."
"The true meaning of Christmas

I wound the snow globe once more. It took a moment, but I recognized the tune. 

Skye tugged the blanket around us. “Have you considered giving Phillip a chance?”

“Maybe.” I hummed the song and Skye joined in. Then together we sang the words.

“ Hark! The herald angels sing,

Glory to the newborn King;

Peace on earth…”

Note: Hark! the Herald Angels Sing, written by Charles Wesley, pub 1739.
Wishing you a Merry Christmas filled with family fun and joyful memories as we celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus! 


Joanne Sher December 20, 2012 at 7:42 AM  

Beautiful story, dear Rita. Merry Christmas

Kiersti December 27, 2012 at 2:34 PM  

Lovely story--merry Christmas!

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"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

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