Does the Christmas season get you down? Is it hard to feel the spirit of Christmas?
In the story, The Timepiece by Richard Paul Evans, Mary and David Parkin lose their young daughter in a fire started by an angry young man as retaliation against David. Of course Mary and David are heartbroken, and depressed.
At Christmas time several months later, they are still grieving terribly, especially David who has long since thrown himself entirely into his work, barely stopping even long enough to eat or sleep.
One day their minister stops by to see how they are doing. He tells Mary of a child who will have no Christmas and invites her to go with him to bring the child a present. Mary goes with him. They are greeted at the small home by a young mother. Her little girl is peeking around her to see who is there. Mary gives her a doll and the child’s eyes light up! She hasn’t had a present in a long time.
As they leave, the minister tells Mary that this is the family of the young man who started the fire and is now in prison. Mary’s heart goes out to the mother and child.
When her husband finally gets home that night, Mary is brimming over with the joy she felt when giving the gift to the little girl. David sees her love and happiness with the experience, and agrees to help provide Christmas to the family. They deliver food and presents to the doorstep of this family who have almost nothing, and watch from afar as they excitedly gather the gifts and take them inside.
Despite their great loss, Mary and David have found the true spirit of Christmas through selflessly giving to those in greater need.
“Then shall the King [Christ] say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
“For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
“Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
“Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
“When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
“Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
“And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” Matthew 25:34-40.