Here we sit on the eve of another Christmas. We start the family festivities today, so we’re already in holiday mode. I’m thinking today about gifts I’ve received for Christmases past. It’s the great ones you remember most… the ones that made your eyes go wide as a child, the ones you remember playing with for hours and hours. The ones that if you could hold them in your hands today, they might still take you back to that Christmas morning as a child when you first opened them.

Parents of course remember the effort it took to find that gift, and how “worth it” it was in the end. Then too, they remember the gift that took a rediculous amount of effort to find, but it was the important one, the “special” one to have… until it broke or until it ceased to entertain within a few short hours of its unpackaging. And yet as parents, we seem perfectly willing to go out and do it again the next year.

I think one of best gifts I’ve received as an adult was a few years ago when my wife got me a novel for Christmas. It was a light fluffy paperback, a good story but not particularly well-written, it was — well, it was a John Grisham novel, if you must know, and I couldn’t even tell you which one without checking. The great part about the gift was what came with it. Along with the book, she gave me the time to read it. It was a Christmas where I needed just the kind of mental escape that a fluff read like a Grisham novel provides. It wasn’t a long read of course, but for the few days over that Christmas until I’d finished the book, whenever I picked it up to read, she made sure I wasn’t disturbed. Time is not an easy gift to give, but that year my wife found a unique way to bless me with it.

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