Christmas is nearly upon us and 2015 is almost in the books. During this holiday season I hope each of you take time to count your blessings and take a few minutes from your busy schedules to enjoy the special spirit this season offers. This month instead of reporting on the status of the city parks, street projects, the budget or the fire department, I thought I’d share a story I read recently which touched me and helped me feel the Christmas Spirit. I hope you enjoy it and think about the special lesson it shares. I promise to be back next year with a monthly report on the latest news and happenings at Town Hall and with the City Council.
It’s entitled “The Gold Wrapping Paper” by Fred Burks for PEERS.
Once upon a time, there was a man who worked very hard just to keep food on the table for his family. This particular year a few days before Christmas, he punished his little five-year-old daughter after learning that she had used up the family’s only roll of expensive gold wrapping paper.
As money was tight, he became even more upset when on Christmas Eve he saw that the child had used all of the expensive gold paper to decorate one shoebox she had put under the Christmas tree. He also was concerned about where she had gotten money to buy what was in the shoebox.
Nevertheless, the next morning the little girl, filled with excitement, brought the gift box to her father and said, “This is for you, Daddy!”
As he opened the box, the father was embarrassed by his earlier overreaction, now regretting how he had punished her.
But when he opened the shoebox, he found it was empty and again his anger flared. “Don’t you know, young lady,” he said harshly, “when you give someone a present, there’s supposed to be something inside the package!”
The little girl looked up at him with sad tears rolling from her eyes and whispered: “Daddy, it’s not empty. I blew kisses into it until it was all full.”
The father was crushed. He fell on his knees and put his arms around his precious little girl. He begged her to forgive him for his unnecessary anger.
An accident took the life of the child only a short time later. It is told that the father kept this little gold box by his bed for all the years of his life. Whenever he was discouraged or faced difficult problems, he would open the box, take out an imaginary kiss, and remember the love of this beautiful child who had put it there.
In a very real sense, each of us has been given an invisible golden box filled with unconditional love and kisses from our children, family, friends and God. There is no more precious possession anyone could hold.
Merry Christmas Santa Clara. I hope happiness finds each of you and your loved ones this season and may your homes be filled with love and laughter every day in 2016. Stay safe.