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A Time of Joy
by Linda Ryzenga
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A Time of Joy

Christmas wasn't as much fun that year. Why did I have to spoil it? I was too eager to open my gifts and ---- Why don't I start at the beginning?
My family always celebrated Christmas on the night of Christmas Eve. Well, I was only seven years old at the time - but that was no excuse! Being ever so excited for Christmas to come, I can remember thinking, I just wish it would hurry up. Won't it ever come? Of course the gifts were the most important part of Christmas at that time in my life.
On the day before Christmas Eve., I stood in the solarium, admiring our beautiful tree, all gorgeously decorated, accented with bubble lights, sparkling ornaments, and flowing silver icicles. White candles adorned each window sill, and gifts were neatly stacked under the tree, each having a different shape and size, all wrapped in traditional Christmas tissue, and accentuated with delightfully colored bows.
I spotted my gifts immediately and piled them, one by one, in front of me. Suddenly I thought, I could probably unwrap one of those gifts very carefully to see what the package contains, and then wrap it back just the way it was. So I did just that. I found that the tape peeled off ever so easily, and carefully, very carefully, I unfolded the wrapping. I was so surprised when upon lifting the lid off the box, a shiny red patent leather purse was revealed to me. It was the most beautiful purse I had ever seen. Oh, I was so excited!
After admiring the gift for a few seconds and hoping my Mother was still in the other part of the house, cleaning, I, very carefully re-folded the paper around the box, then sliding the ribbon over the wrapped box, I immediately picked up the next gift and proceeded to continue the process. I must have unwrapped and re-wrapped about eight gifts that afternoon. When I finished with my deceitful plot, I knew the contents of each gift.
The next evening was Christmas Eve, but for some reason, I wasn't anxious for the gift exchange to begin. As I unwrapped each gift, I tried to act excited. It wasn't as easy as I had anticipated, although I did do a fairly decent job, considering. I guess you could say, "I pulled it off."
My parents never knew what I did, and I never told them until a few years later. Mom had a surprised look on her face as if finding it hard to believe that her "little angel" would stoop to that level. I explained that Christmas had not been as much fun that year because I wasn't surprised. I only know that I never did it again.
Two very valuable lessons were learned by "yours truly" that year. First of all, it was very dishonest of me to open the gifts at that time. My parents had spent valuable time shopping, and wrapping those gifts. They were anticipating my surprise and joy when I would first be viewing each of them. Secondly, if a gift is opened at the right time there is much joy. The experience of sharing a surprise with loved ones brings an over-abundance of joy.
Jesus was the most wonderful gift that any of us could have wished for, and the time was right when He was born. There had been much waiting and anticipating His arrival. Yes, it was a joyful time and people were surprised and jubilant that our Savior had finally come. It was not only a joyous time, but most importantly, a time to thank God for His great gift. Every year Christmas should be celebrated, by each one of us, as a time of joy.

If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW

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Member Comments
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Gerry Alderink 21 Jul 2004
I was so pleased to see your courage in writing something revealing what most people would hide forever. Yet, with your honesty, you have opened up the way for others to do the same, and then experience release from bondages as well as the refreshment that foriveness brings. It also shows that writing about personal experiences provides good reading material.


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