Alyssa quickly closed the church office door behind her and locked it. Though only five o'clock in the evening, the sun had already set. She strained to see in the dark, hurrying to reach her car through the blustering wind and rain of mid-December.
She opened the door to her blue Honda and slid into the driver's seat. As she started the engine, her eyes looked up to see a large paper bag resting on her windshield.
“What --?” Curiosity drew her out of the car despite the soaking rain.
It contained a bouquet of gerber daisies, a honeycrisp apple, and a small card. She pulled it into the car and opened the card.
"My love, I know how much you love apples - I doubt you even go one day without one. It's one of your most endearing quirks. It's twelve days until Christmas, and I want to be a little different with my gift. So, I present to you: the Twelve Daisies of Christmas!"
Alyssa gazed down at the daisies. She had told Paul many times how much she loved daisies - that they reflected the joyful nature of God. This will definitely cheer away the gloom I'm feeling from this rainy December weather....
They had dated for eight months, and he constantly encouraged her. Of course, he also laughed at the quirky behaviors she had picked up in her single years.
She ate an apple every day. “And why not?” she always replied, laughing. “We live in Washington!”
He had told her the night before that he would be working overtime and extra hours this holiday season, so they would not have time to see each other again before Christmas Day. During the drive home, she thanked God for the incredibly thoughtful man He had placed in her life. Though she desired marriage, she still wanted to enjoy every moment as it came. What a beautiful gift, Jesus. Thank You!
Day Two dawned with a light drizzle from the pale grey sky, and Alyssa tried to avoid peeking out the office window throughout the day to see if Paul had brought a new gift. Her curiosity won out at 4:45pm, but she saw nothing on the Honda. When she locked the office door behind her at five, however, she could see the new gift resting on the windshield as before.
It contained another bouquet of daisies, two Bic rollerball pens still in the package, and a card.
"Darling, you LOVE these pens - I've seen you flat out refuse a ballpoint in favor of these very particular pens. Here's two more for your collection. I love you!"
She laughed aloud. She had the rollerball pens in her office, her purse, her car, her kitchen, her bedroom....not a ballpoint to be found anywhere. Thanks, Lord. I needed that laugh!
On Day Three she found three coupons for free smoothies; Day Four brought four extra large coffee mugs; and on Day Five came five pillar candles. Each gift came with a bouquet of daisies and the accompanying card. Days Six through Eleven followed the same pattern, delivering movie tickets, dark chocolate bars, patterned holiday socks, sugarfree cinnamon gum, an i-Tunes gift card, and magnetic picture frames.
Even on her days off, Paul waited until the evening to slip the gift onto her car. Though they did not even have time to talk, she felt her love growing each day. As the days passed, Alyssa's living room filled with the bouquets of daisies. The dark days of late December grew light with joy, and even the rain could not drown out her thankfulness to God.
On Christmas Day, she peeked out her bedroom window, surprised to see sunshine. She walked to her parents' house with the joy building in her heart, eager to see her family and of course, Paul, who would meet her there.
Upon arriving at her parents' home, she noticed a large bouquet of deep red roses on the porch. One dozen, for Day Twelve. She inhaled the scent, breathing deeply and thanking God for His goodness and love.
“I saved the best for last.” Paul's voice came from behind her. “For the Twelfth Day, I have a question.”
As she turned around, she found him kneeling on the porch, daisy in hand. In the center lay the final gift, sparkling in the sun -
A diamond ring!
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