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by Cary Branscum
Look Daddy! Im an elf! I turn around and its true. She IS an elf and a fairy princess. She is my daughter, and we are in the mall, or, as she thinks of it The Mall. She stands on one foot with a satin Santa hat perched on her head. I am fifty, and she is ten, a gift in middle age that makes all that went before it worthwhile.
She is a vision, and as I smile back at her, I pray, O Lord, dont let me blow it. If nothing else, let me be a good dad.
I drive slowly back home as she sits beside me in the front seat, humming to the radio and bouncing to the music. I drive as slowly as I can. I dont want the ride to end. Maybe if I drive slowly enough, shell never grow up! My wife and I will make it a good Christmas for her.
I have a son in his twenties who is trying to finish college. I have another daughter, nearly twenty, sizing up lifes options. I have another son, eighteen, and handicapped, a special blessing from God who will live with us as long as we are able to care for him. We will make it a good Christmas for them.
But I think of others, and this is where you come in. You see, I need your help.
Right now, YOU, my friend yeah buddy, I am talkin to YOU! Im not talking to the armed forces, social services, the government, the police or firemen. They are doing a LOT! Im talkin to YOU. In fact, imagine me as a television evangelist. I have long gray hair swept back and slicked down with ten pounds of hairspray. In fact, in someone lit a match within fifty feet, Id go up like a Christmas tree. Imagine me in an orange polyester suit, and white patent leather shoes with five inch tall heels. I am, Y-yayus, I am talking-uh, to YYOOOOUUU. So listen, or I will show up at your door and Ill be wearing this whole outfit.
You see, you can make this a great Christmas for someone. It can be anyone. Young or old, family, friend, or stranger. You may be the only one who can help some people. OPEN YOUR HEART, OPEN YOUR WALLET, GET PAST YOURSELF! open your eyes, really SEE. Look for opportunity. Thats the secret to a great Christmas not only for someone else, but for you as well. Oh yeah, you want a scripture? Well here it is, and it is absolutely true. Jesus himself said it all so clearly that Paul, who didnt know Jesus when he was alive knew the saying: Look at it in Acts 20:35. You can easily forget my words, but dont forget His: It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Author: Cary Branscum
Publication Date: December 14, 2001
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