Christmas Miracle in China
Christmas at my house, when I was growing up always seemed magical.
My grandmother had set the example for my mother who then made it that way for me and I, in turn did for my children. And they now do for my grandchildren. Traditions held and hold a lot of weight in my home.
My grandmother worked diligently to give her family a wonder-filled Christmas even though they were far from home serving as missionaries in China. At that time China was infested with war-lords, bandits and paganism. It did not foster a “Merry Christmas”. There were no stores or shopping malls. No Musak playing “Jingle Bell Rock” or Salvation Army bell ringers. However, that did not hinder her! She knew local folks who were good at crafting the things her imagination could invent.
One year my mother wanted baby doll eyeglasses. My mother’s heart was set on getting the baby doll eyeglasses from Santa. My grandmother was dismayed – that was something she could not have made in China (in those days!) My mother began to pray for those eyeglasses – so did my grandmother. She did not want my mother to be disappointed but this seemed like an impossible request. As Christmas drew nearer, my grandmother began to worry. My mother had her heart set on those baby doll eyeglasses.
Now in the scheme of things considering the work they were doing in China as medical missionaries, the needs they encountered on a daily basis, the crises that erupted weekly….this was not a “big” deal. You could say it was a “materialistic want” of a little girl on the backside of China. But my mother and grandmother did not see it that way. They continued to pray.
My grandparents believed that nothing was too small – or too big to bring before the Lord. They simply told God their need and trusted him to handle it His way. That’s the way they handled kidnappings, financial needs, health issues – everything. They prayed. Those missionary prayer meetings were powerful! As a child I can remember every Wednesday morning at my grandparents’ home the now-retired, missionaries would gather for prayer – on their knees – for what seemed like a long time to a young girl.
Back to my story, months earlier, my grandfather had sent a letter to the States requesting supplies for the hospital. A few days before Christmas a “drum” arrived from the States. Now a drum was just that – a very large barrel made out of metal – much like an oil drum. It was a convenient, cheap and safe way to ship things to China by boat that could take weeks, if not months. It was always a big occasion when one arrived. They never knew what it might contain but eagerly anticipated the much needed supplies.
As they opened the drum, they saw the necessities that had been requested. But on top, wrapped very carefully was a pair of baby doll eyeglasses!
God cares for us in the sweetest of ways and the smallest of details.
Have a wonder-filled Christmas!