My favorite Christmas present was the Raggedy Ann doll I received from my parents when I was seven years old. She is the gift who carried the true meaning of Christmas for me, and nothing has ever taken her place in my memory. From the moment I took her out of her box, we were inseparable. I read the Raggedy Ann and Andy stories written by her creator, Johnny Gruelle, and I wrote my own stories about our adventure together. Raggedy Ann rode everywhere with me on my bike, came along on family vacations and even went with me to camp.
We have grown old together, and she rests in my china cabinet now with her white kitten on her lap. Her face has stains and marks from a thousand kisses and a life well-travelled. Her button eyes are scratched and her once bright red hair has faded to a dusty orange. Her cloth covering shows signs of wear, and in some places her cotton stuffing is visible. My mother knitted little mittens to cover her fragile hands and striped booties to protect the thinning fabric on her legs and feet. The only part of my Raggedy Ann doll that looks as new as it did on her first Christmas morning is the painted heart hidden beneath her pinafore. Inside it are the words “I love you.”
~ Becky Everhart
O God, when we are young we often form strong attachments to dolls or stuffed animals. They may accompany us wherever we go. This toy may be the last thing we see at night and the first thing we see when we awaken the next morning. We thank You for Your love which is so strong that nothing will be able to separate us from Your love in Christ Jesus our Lord. In whose name, we pray. Amen.