Friday, December 17, 2010


For many past years my daughter, Anne, and I, have created the Christmas cards that have gone out to friends and family.  She does the art work, I do the words.  

This year we have collaborated on our 2010 Christmas card and they have been mailed out.  

Both the art work and the messages on these cards are at least in part devised to appeal to children who, as we know, seldom receive cards which speak to them.  Here for this year-ending blog is the message on this year's card, unfortunately without the dazzling art work of Anne:

"Once upon a time in a faraway country there lived a boy by the name of Eli.

Every day he tended the sheep on his father's farm.

Because Eli had a very active imagination he sometimes imagined flying through the air visiting all the exciting places he read about but knew he would never see.

One day while tending the sheep a man appeared to Eli asking him if he would like to visit those exciting places.

"Yes, yes," said Eli, "but I can't leave the sheep."
"The sheep will be just fine until we get back," the man replied. "Now hang on because here we go!"

In a moment Eli found himself soaring high above the earth, through the air, past the heavens, through the clouds, far beyond all the stars and planets.

As they soared high above the heavens Eli said, "Nobody will ever believe me when I tell them where I've been and what I've seen."

The man who was guiding him said, "Just take this little piece of heaven
in your hand, hang on to it, and when people ask where you've been just show them this piece of heaven."

When Eli looked at what he had in his hand he was amazed at what he saw.

The piece of heaven looked like the hugs his father and mother gave him every day.  It looked like the neighbors who picked him up when he fell on the rocks while he was playing.

It looked like his own friends who sometimes on Saturday's visited the children who were patients in the Children's Hospital.

What he held in his hand was very light so he held onto it very tightly.

Once back home he thought he ought to quit imagining things like having a cloud in his hands.

But when he went to bed that night just before he dropped off to sleep, he took the piece of heaven out of his hand and looked at it.

To his astonishment he saw in the cloud the man who had taken him on his journey.  

And as he went to sleep he thought how beautiful it is that a person, even a child, could make a heaven out of ordinary things...

        Like hugs

             And neighbors

                 And children who care for other children

                       In this world."

I personally like the thought of Rev. 13:13, ..."come down from heaven to earth."  What this speaks to me is that the lofty themes of heaven can so easily be translated into the mundane, daily, things of earth. "I saw a new heaven and a new earth," is the way heaven, a theme so prominent at Christmas, is translated into human love, forgiveness, patience, kindness and so much else.  So, at this year's ending, with so much to gratify and please, my blessing to all, and I know Anne joins me in this, "May God give you the dew of heaven."  Gen. 27:28