Twenty years of Christmas letters! Today one dropped in the mail again. Is it from family? No! Is it from a friend of my childhood? No! That’s what’s so amazing!
Let me give you some history. I have written a few blogs about my daughter Eva-Marie, who battled cystic fibrosis for 31 years. That is a miracle, that she lived that long! The doctor who diagnosed her said she might reach the age of 12. There weren’t as many helpful drugs and treatments as today back in the early 70’s.
The list of hospitals, doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, home health care, etc., etc. that we visited or who came through our doors could be very long, not so much as to reach around the world, but just about. One of them was Joan. She came into our lives early on in our stay in the USA, as one in a long line of respiratory therapists. Eva-Marie’s lungs needed to be cleared of mucus, and that’s what she would help her with.
See the little dog by the pillow? That was our Smulan (little crumb), who came to us as a little fur-ball in 1992 and stayed for 15 years. She took on her job of being Eva-Marie’s friend and companion from the start. The little “crumb” stayed in bed with her, she slept with her, she sat with her in the easy-chair, she kept her company everywhere.
For Christmas, Eva-Marie had a picture taken of her “baby,” and just like I used to send cards of my kids and now “brag” about my grandchildren, she sent cards of Smulan to her friends. One of her friends was her respiratory therapist, Joan. Somehow we ended up on Joan’s (and her husband Bill) Christmas letter list, and have received a greeting every year.
I’ve followed with interest Joan and Bill’s children’s development. They are young adults now, and it’s not just Ryan and Jackie anymore. Of course, they’ve got other names connected with them. That’s the way life goes. I’m so glad that Joan has kept me on her list. Every year I get a letter and I get a picture. One of the pictures of the family has been sitting on my bookshelf for many years, as one of my favorite families to pray for.
Do you have people who send you letters faithfully every year? Are you a faithful “sender”?
I got another happy Christmas greeting today. A friend who has somehow taken me under her wings, surprised me with a check. I can either keep it or pass it on. I’ve passed on quite a few check I’ve received from this friend over the years. Come to think of it, I gave someone a check yesterday, in that same amount. I wasn’t expecting to get anything back. This makes it even more interesting to give it away.
Christmas is about generosity. The gifts don’t have to be big. A letter, like the ones I receive every year from Joan, works perfect for me. A check in the mail is more than perfect. It’s not the size that’s important; it’s the thought and love behind it.
God gave us the perfect gift, wrapped as a baby. O, such great love!
Thanks be to God for his
(2 Corinthians 9:15)