My Favorite Christmas Gift Ever!
You may have thought from the title of this post I was going to give you the trite answer: Jesus! Well, of course, he is the greatest gift ever! To me that's a given. This post, however, is really about the earthly gifts of Christmas, and how they may even shape our lives in God's perfect plan.
As we grow up in different places on the timeline of mankind and different corners of the world, Christmas gifts change from generation to generation. Still, the nostalgia of our youth and those mornings tearing into packages remains for a lifetime. There is nothing like looking back as an adult and remembering the treasures Santa left under your tree on Christmas morning when you were 5 or 8 or, in my case just 2.
I think that at a very early age, God instilled in me a love for music, because all my life, I have somehow been musically engaged. I remember playing the red and yellow 75 rpm records on my little phonograph as a pre-schooler, and then all those years of dancing and children's choir. In high school I developed a tremendous love for Broadway musicals, and could sing just about any song from just about any musical out there. At the ripe "old age" of 41, I began performing Christian pop music with Greg, and now I'm on the church worship team and sing at our 1 Way Cafe. I can't imagine life without music, and though my tastes have changed from secular to mostly Christian, I'll be singing and listening til God takes me home. But where did it all begin?
On Christmas morning of my second year, under our tree was a beautiful set of bells. The bells were stacked in a plastic frame, one on the top, then two, then three and four on the bottom...an octave! Each bell was attached by a string to a key on a color matching keyboard. As the color key was pressed the bell would ring out part of a tune. Now, I'm quite sure I did not do much real music playing that Christmas, given my age, but I remember years to follow, when that set of bells was one of my favorite things. I was playing "Mary Had a Little Lamb" and "Three Blind Mice" on it when I was much older, because I have vivid memories of doing so. To this day, I am absolutely sure that those little bells were the beginning of a lifetime of loving music.
Do you have a special gift that you received one Christmas morning? Tell me about it in the comments section of this blog posting, and I may use your story for a future blog inspiration.
James 1: 17 tells us that "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights." As I got older, I saw an opportunity to touch hearts and minister to those who are hurting through the gift of music that God gave me as such a little child. Thank you Father for sending me the bells, so that I might worship you in spirit and in truth through music all my life!
This is a photo of us the Christmas I got my beautiful bells. (I'm the littlest one.)