Tuesday, December 8, 2015

They are Hung with Care - Sans Chimney

Our family has a thing about Christmas stockings, and by "our family", I suppose, I mean me.  My grandmother made my sock.  My mother made my sons' socks.  I have made them for my grandboys and girlies.  And so it goes.  Once made, I love to stuff them, too, with odd trinkets that express my love for the person named on the cuff.  We don't have a picturesque fireplace to decorate, but they are indeed hung with care, and that's Christmas enough!

The origin goes that a poor family was in desperate need of money.  Nicholas (prior to his sainthood) wanted to give the money anonymously, so he dropped a bag of gold down the chimney.  It landed in a stocking that had been hung by the fireplace to dry.  Sidebar:  if indeed he was able to make the gold come to rest in the sock, I believe it would have counted as a miracles needed for his sainthood.  The story, though, does highlight the tale of an extravagant gift breaking into the mundane and changing lives as a result:  soggy footwear and golden coins when the need was greatest.

Two thousand years ago, what was more ordinary than a cattle trough in a rural setting?  What more extravagant a gift can be given than a King setting aside his crown, humbling Himself to live among us and show His love?  And oh how that gift has changed/transformed lives though the millennia, mine included!

Chimney or not, gold coins or oranges, how much more Christmas can you get?

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