A couple of our friends were able to come and spend Christmas with us here in Florida one year. Palm trees, sandy beaches, sunshine and good friends. This alone would be reason enough to shout and holler that truly ´my cup runneth over´. Not according to one of them though who always seemed very concerned about our financial well being.
I assured him I had absolutely everything I could possibly need but he argued that I was living in denial. Peter had watched us revert from a financial success story to losing absolutely everything we owned. We were defrauded out of a great sum of money. The people that cheated us went to jail, but we never got our money back. We now lived on my husband´s medical retirement pension and God provided everything else that was needed over and above that. "As a matter of fact," I assured him, "I probably have more shoes right now, in more colors, than I had when we were bringing home the four digit paychecks."
The debate intensified. I could tell that I wasn´t scoring points so I reminded them both that my motto was that money could not buy any of the important things in life, just the counterfeit. Money could buy you sex, but not love. Medicine, but not health. Glamour but not beauty. It could buy you a gold watch, but not five minutes of time when you needed it. Therefore, the best things in life were free." My friend obviously did not adhere to this philosophy. Pity.
Oh there was a whole list of things I would like. I could probably go out and spend $25,000 in one afternoon on things that would be nice to have and buy presents for family and friends, but that was not what Christmas was about.
By divine appointment my front doorbell rang and my friend Bette waltzed in all bubbly and cheery and in a very festive mood and handed me this little ornate bag with ribbons hanging from it. Like a little kid I had to open it right away while she ran around the room hugging and kissing everyone. I reached into the bag and when I pulled out the tiny plaque, I started to sob. Now everybody that knows me, knows I NEVER cry. Ever. Somebody has to die before I´ll shed tears. But, I am really crying. Out loud. I mean these gigantic drops of H2O are pouring down my face and everyone´s flabbergasted and wondering ´Why?´.
I could barely believe my eyes. It was incredible. "PETER, PETER, there IS something I have need of, and the Lord just sent it!"
He not only provides what I need, He rings my bell and brings it right to my front door," I sniffed.
Just the week before, I was at the Christian bookstore, reading every plaque and every card and anything that had writing on it, trying to find a certain ´prayer-poem´ that I had stuck on my fridge many years ago. I spent almost two hours looking for it, even though I hate to shop. To me, shopping is synonymous with going to the dentist, but I was determined to find it. I wanted it for my friend Judy who had been going through very difficult times for months. I couldn´t remember all the words, but they were just what she needed to hear and I couldn´t think of anything more special or encouraging for her that Christmas. Eventually I gave up, and left the store very disappointed. On Christmas Eve, Jesus had it delivered right to my front door. His Christmas present to me. The timing of it´s arrival was remarkable. God honored my words. I ran to the phone and called Judy. Through choked words and crackling voice, I read what I knew God needed her to hear.
This same prayer is my Christmas gift to all of you reading this article:
I SAID A PRAYER FOR YOU TODAY I said a prayer for you today And know God must have heard I felt the answer in my heart Although He spoke no word. I didn´t ask for wealth or fame. I knew you wouldn´t mind. I asked Him to send treasures Of a far more lasting kind. I asked that He´d be near you At the start of each new day. To grant you health and blessings And friends to share your way. I asked for happiness for you In all things great and small. But it was for His loving care I prayed the most of all.
Two thousand years ago, God presented us all with a most precious gift, Himself. Emmanuel, God with us. The greatest gift you can give to someone this Christmas is to tell them about Him and give them this prayer. Copyright Donna Martonfi www.psalm40ministries