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Steve Hein

Memories of Christmas

One of the startling differences between Kay and I are our memories of childhood.  I believe Kay could just about tell you about every Christmas she had as a child and I barely remember my childhood!!

It is said that memories are created by the forging together of an event with a strong emotion.  It is very possible that my nature, which is not very emotional, has lent itself to only a few memories of Christmas as a child.  There are however, three that I remember pretty well.

First is the Christmas where my parents decided to get the same Christmas gift for their four sons.  That gift was a pool table, which by the way we all really enjoyed and it brought lots of fun to us all.  But the strong memory of that morning was the lack of Christmas gifts under the tree for us boys.  If I remember correctly, under the tree was one small package for each of us and mine was a shoe shine kit!!  Well the pool table was great but a shoe shine kit!! Really!!  Looking back it showed my lack of maturity and appreciation of my parents.

The next memory goes back to an early time.  I was about seven years old.  It was Christmas Eve.  We had gone to church as a family.  Actually I do not remember going, but we always did go to church and surely we went.  I had trouble falling asleep, but finally did.  Then for some strange reason I woke up in the middle of the night.  I got out of bed and snuck quietly down the stairs and peered into the living room.  And what did my eyes perceive but a man, not just any man, a man in a red suit, long white beard putting presents under the tree.  That Christmas morning I told my brothers what I had seen.  My little brother’s eyes were opened with amazement while my older two brothers declared I was having a dream!!!  Maybe I was sleep walking, I will never know.

One last memory that I will share with you.  It was my sophomore year in college.  My parents had asked for my Christmas list and at the top of my list I had put a Bible.  That fall, I had come into a relationship with Jesus Christ and wanted a Bible of my own.  I had never read the Bible and really wanted to now.  So I can remember my Dad handing me a present beautifully wrapped.  It was really heavy.  I tore off the paper and there is was, my own Bible.  Honestly that is one of the very few presents I remember receiving as young person and I still have it!!  It sits on a shelf in my office.  I love that Bible because it tells me the story of a little baby born in Bethlehem who is the Savior of the world and mine as well!!

Merry Christmas,
Steve Hein