The Heart of Paul – Christmas

Long, long ago; and I do mean long when I was teaching school we would have a special program on the last day before the Christmas holidays as well as a party for the children and as much as we discouraged it some of the children would give the teachers gifts. It was a very thoughtful jester and as teachers we down played it all we could and tried not to make too much to do about it for the feelings of those whose parents did not send gifts with them. I had known Paul, a seventh grader, for five years or more and knew that his family was one of the poorest in our community. They were good people, just left out of life and never able to catch up with others so it was no surprise when he came to me after the other children had left the room and said that his family was behind in their shopping and he would have my gift when we returned to school after the holidays. I hugged Paul assured him that it was not something for him to be worried about and wished him and his family a wonderful Christmas. A friend of mine and I got together and purchased gifts for Paul, his sister and brother as well as his parents and along with a large basket of food that our church had prepared we visited the family and delivered the gifts a few days before Christmas. I had been in their home a number of times, if you call standing in the door speaking with them, in their home, they were never comfortable with inviting me in so I was not surprised when the greeting was repeated as we delivered the gifts. They were very grateful and had too much to say about our sharing with them, I prayed standing in the door and we left. My friend said, I think Paul’s father will like the three pair of wool socks you got for him, I noticed he was barefooted on a cold day like this. I agreed and we took gifts to a couple of other places and called it a day. True to his word on the first day of school after the holidays there was the gift from Paul waiting on my desk. Wrapped in paper that had been used once before was a beautiful pair of wool socks, just like the three I had given his father. My heart was humbled as I hugged Paul and thanked him for the gift. I never knew if Paul’s parents knew about the gift to me or not and I was sure that Paul did not know where the socks had come from but it was not important, the value was not in the wool socks, but in the heart of Paul.

Ivan

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Published in: on December 15, 2014 at 11:05 pm  Leave a Comment  

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