A Christmas Gift For YouPosted: December 23, 2010
For five long years it sat on a shelf in the closet.
Amidst shoes and winter sweaters and baby clothes its bright pieces beckoned a child, promising cheerful play.
Except the children were all gone and there was no one to notice a simple 8 piece track with matching bus the color of sunshine.
Then, Christmas 2010, the family returned! From travels and adventures spanning the world, they returned to this place for the holidays. This is the place they call “home.”
After the children are in bed, we visit the closet in Grandma’s house, sorting through stored belongings and taking out old toys that will be re-wrapped and discovered all over again this Christmas.
We find the sunshine set and I lock the pieces in place while husband finds a screwdriver to bring life to the matchbox-car sized school bus.
But when a new battery is inserted and the switch turned on…nothing.
Our hearts sink at the ending of the toy that brought firstborn son so much joy. “He played with this set for hours,” Husband says, and I nod sadly and finger the small bus.
“I wonder if they could just push the bus?” I mutter it as I place the bus on the board to see if it would work.
My fingers feel the familiar curves; my eyes imagine a little boy’s laugh as I push the bus around the track time after time. When I stop, the bus rolls just a split second…then keeps on going!
The wheels have come to life and what I thought was a thing of the past is new and moving and real and will be the joy of not one little boy on Christmas morning but 4 little ones, eager to have a turn arranging the pieces and seeing little bus go.
Something inside me awakens too.
It has been many long years since I dared to go there. It has been stored away, placed up amidst other memories and seasons gone by. It was a nice thought, once. A noble idea, a soul dream….but I moved on. I had to. Life didn’t have room for me to take it along, like an overstuffed suitcase. It had to stay behind, parked on a shelf in a closet far, far from me.
And when I chanced upon it again, I fondly fingered its beauty, remembered with bittersweetness its joy and awe. But it doesn’t work now. It can’t. It’s a thing of the past and cannot be resurrected to fit my present.
Except suddenly, when the wheels of the sunbeam bus are nudged and encouraged, Divine fingers seem to reach down and nudge and encourage the place of dreams in me.
And just as little bus drives around track on its own, awakened again by fresh power and a little coaxing to un-freeze his wheels, so the message reaches my heart: in its time, the dead can come to life.
Isn’t this what Christmas is about? “When the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son…”
Years and years of waiting…of wondering, “Is this the One?”…of longing…of finally closing the book for 400 years and placing it on a shelf in the closet…of silence.
The time had come.
The darkness behind earth’s closet doors pierced through as the Light of the world opened the womb of a woman.
Hands that Created brought Life to us and what we once thought dead and hopeless and just a dream of the past became living and real and not just for us to open but for a whole world to receive and awe over and find joy in.
The time has come. For you.
For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given.
Today is the day of the Lord’s favor. Today is the day of salvation. Today.
Heaven has come down. Life has been given. Today is the day. Rejoice!
And like the wheels on little yellow bus, we can come to life. Come to Life.