The Twelve Days of Christmas
Day Six...December 19, 2009
Terry Paulson, PhD, CSP, CPAE
On the Sixth Day of Christmas my true friend gave to me...
A Christmas of warmth…
This year, each message will be archived on my website, and you can see some past collections of messages by visiting that website now at
A CHRISTMAS THOUGHT FOR THE DAY...
Our minds on life's looming problems,
like bills and household chores,
job deadlines and doctor's appointments,
family quarrels and the latest diet,
we sometime forget to notice
that God's presence has crept
quietly and sweetly
into the smallest details of our lives,
like the sun on our face,
a warm hand in ours,
a child's laughter,
and a family's love.
This Christmas season, may you see
the Christmas Baby
at the heart
of your life.
I LOVE TO TELL THE STORY..."An Unforgettable Gift"
On Christmas morning, 1912, in Paducah, Kentucky, fourteen-year-old Charlie Flowers and his three brothers and two sisters huddled in their beds, fully dressed, trying to keep warm as the wind howled outside their small frame house. It was a desperate time for the family; earlier that year their father had died. Now, the coal had run out. There was little money - none for gifts.
Their tree with decorations made from scraps of colored paper had been given to them the night before by a local merchant who said he "couldn't sell this last one." To pass the time, the children joked and shouted stories from their bedrooms across the hallway from one another. Then suddenly a racket from the alley at the rear of the house broke into their games.
Charlie pulled on his shoes and ran out back. There stood a man in a wagon bent over a load of coal, shoveling it into the shed as fast as he could. Charlie shouted, "Hey mister, we didn't order any coal. You're delivering it to the wrong house."
"Your name's Flowers, isn't it?" the man asked, still shoveling. Charlie nodded. "Well then, there's no mistake. I've been asked to deliver this to your family on Christmas morning." Then he turned and looked the awe-struck boy square in the eye.
"And I'm under strict orders not to tell who sent it," he teased. Charlie ran into the house, his coat tail flapping in the cold morning wind. He could hardly wait to tell his mother and brothers and sisters. God had provided just as He had on that first Christmas morning so long ago when He sent His only Son to a needy world.
Charlie Flowers died in 1994 at age 96. And right up to the last year of his life, not a Christmas went by that he didn't tell the story of that sub-zero Christmas morning of his boyhood when two men gave his family an unforgettable gift. It wasn't the coal that was remembered or cherished, Charlie often said - welcome as it was - but rather what two men brought to his desperate family.
One, for his gift of recognizing their great need and taking the time to do something about it. And the other, for being willing to give up part of his own Christmas morning to deliver it. That gift of so long ago has continued to warm the Flowers family from one generation to another, as Charlie's son - my husband - calls to mind these two unknown men each Christmas morning and whispers a prayer of thanks.
…Compliments of Karen O’Connor, award-winning author and retreat speaker from San Diego.
DR. PAULSON'S THE OPTIMISM ADVANTAGE IS AVAILABLE FOR PRESALE FOR A GIFT THAT IS OPENED IN MARCH!
How about giving a gift that comes to your recipient in March? That’s right. Why open all your gifts at one time. People are going to need an OPTIMISM LIFT in March. Make a gift of Dr. Paulson’s new book, The Optimism Advantage: 50 Simple Truths to Transform Your Attitudes and Actions into Results. You can pick your favorite site to place orders early:
BARNES AND NOBLE
AND NOW YOUR YouTube CHRISTMAS MOMENT...
No matter how bad things get, it’s nice to review…It’s a Wonderful Life! Enjoy this musical retelling of the timeless movie classic…and remember that you do matter….
Remember, You can find the archived messages from this year's series on my website at http://terrypaulson.com/christmas.shtml/. For now, keep your sense of humor and your sense of thanksgiving and anticipation! More tomorrow...as we prepare for His coming!
Your Host for our 12 Day Journey to Christmas.
Terry Paulson, PhD