The Christmas That Almost Wasn’t
In the 1980s my family was poor. We didn’t have a lot, including food. But God always provided — through His people.
My father worked two jobs to get by. The first was in a print shop, the second was as a professional painter. The problem was that sometimes he didn’t have painting jobs lined up. That was the case for one Christmas season in the mid-80s.
One time our cousins came over for dinner. We didn’t have much to serve them but some meat. When it was time for my cousin to fill his plate, he asked ever so politely, “Will someone please pass the bone?”
My family prayed for God’s provision. But that Christmas seemed bleaker than the rest. We didn’t have food or money to buy a Christmas dinner. We didn’t have toys on a Christmas list because we knew we weren’t going to get anything. Still, we trusted God.
Then one day a package arrived in the mail. We didn’t know the sender, but we had a mutual friend. To our surprise, the package contained dolls and other toys. It also included a check to buy a Christmas dinner! The most memorable moment came when my father sat down on the couch, check in hand. Tears sprang to his eyes and it was the first time I saw him cry. God came through in a big way.
But like He does with nearly everything, He used people to bless us. People who prayed. People who sought to be the hands and feet of Christ. I can imagine the family sitting down and praying over who needed God’s blessing most. These were people who were open to His direction, even if they didn’t know the family who needed help.
And so, by listening to Him, their generosity provided our Christmas. We had food and my siblings and I had toys. There was lots of laughter in the Webb household that Christmas. I will never forget the family that gave. God provided, using His people.
As I prepare for the joyous Christmas season, I’ll ask our heavenly father whom I should help in a time of need. By listening to His direction, I will bless others as I’ve been blessed.