A Sparce Christmas fromThe Vision of a Mother’s Heart

Most of have grown up looking forward to Christmas. We celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Because He is God’s gift to us, children see the Christmas as a magical time when they get to eat wonderful treats and look forward to singing Christmas carols and expecting their wish for special toys to be granted. The day dawns early as the children race to the tree and unwrapping  gifts in record speed, while pleased parents watch with delight as their children’s eyes light up, exclaiming, “Awesome, Mom!”
We have all been there – as the excited child and many parents and grandparents look forward to this special day.

One Christmas, the Greene family had very little to share that Christmas and Mama was unable to bake, decorate or even buy gifts for the children. It had been a hard year on Apple Tree Farm. What would the children do without these things to look forward to?  Isabel came up with a plan.

The Vision of a Mother’s Heart
By Katherine Hinchee Purdy

A Sparse Christmas

“Mama,” Isabel said, “are we poor?”
Mama sat the biscuits on the table beside a dish of hand churned butter.
“I suppose if you compare us to some people who live in fine houses with beautiful furnishings,
one could say we are poor. However, I don’t see it that way.”
“You don’t?” Isabel said as she looked down at her well worn dress.
“God has given us so much. We have a house with a roof that does not leak and wood
to keep our home warm. We have food on the table and love in our hearts. The biggest blessing
of all is that we have each other. When you stop to count your blessings, you may realize that we are rich in mercy and grace.” Mama said.

“But what about Christmas?” Isabel asked with tears threatening to spill over.
“Christmas is about Christ,” Mama said.
“I know, but Sylvie is expecting Santa to come.”

“We have never made Santa the center of Christmas. In fact, we have never given credit
to anyone but the Lord for the things we have.” Mama poured milk into each glass at the table.
“I know, but the other children at school do,” Isabel said.

“We always hang our stockings on the mantle on Christmas Eve,and they always have goodies in them on Christmas morning.” Isabel muttered as she placed the last plate on the table.

“Yes, I know you do, Dear,” Mama said softly, “but I’m afraid this year will be different.
Now please ring the dinner bell before supper gets cold.”

∞∞
Later that night, when everyone in the house was asleep, Isabel quietly slipped out of bed
and stood by the window, gazing at the sky.

“Please, Lord,” she prayed, “help us make this a good Christmas for Mama, Papa,
and the children too.”

When she awoke the next morning, snow was swirling outside. The grass and trees were already

covered with the sparkly white blanket.
She could hear Papa stomping snow off his boots as he came inside after milking the cows.
Isabel dressed quickly and hurried downstairs to help prepare breakfast.

After breakfast and chores were completed, everyone scattered to work on secret projects
for Christmas. Eugene and Curtis disappeared for several hours and returned at lunchtime,
pulling a beautiful tree behind them.

The children were beside themselves with excitement as Eugene placed the tree on a stand
and set it up in the corner of the parlor. There were a few ornaments from previous years,
and the girls filled in bare spots with popcorn strings, paper chains, and ornaments Eugene
fashioned out of tin.

Mama’s eyes misted as she entered the parlor after a long nap.
“Surprise!” the children said. They pulled her to the tree to see what they had made.
Mama and Papa exchanged glances over the children’s heads, and Isabel noticed
concern in their eyes.

“Don’t worry, Mama,” Isabel said as she poured a cup of hot chocolate for Mama.
“This year, we’re doing Christmas for you and Papa.
Eugene will even read the Christmas story tonight, and I will bake a chicken
for our dinner on Christmas Day. I guess we’ll just have soup for Christmas Eve.
Merry Christmas, Mama! Do you like the tree?”

“The tree is lovely, and you all are wonderful,” Mama said as she dabbed her eyes with a hankie.
Just as the family sat down for their Christmas Eve soup, there was a knock at the door.

{To read more about Isabel’s sparce Christmas, order a copy of The Vision of a Mother’s Heart today!
You may be surprised to see the goodness of the Lord even in the midst of poverty.}

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