I had to have my tonsils and adenoids out during Christmas vacation when I was six years old. I remember being very worried that Santa would forget about me because I wouldn’t be home on Christmas Eve. My parents tried to reassure me that Santa always knew exactly where I was, but my child’s heart was inconsolable.
When I awakened from surgery, I saw a brightly wrapped package beside me in my hospital bed. I had a sore throat and was sick from the anesthesia, but I was so happy to see that Santa had remembered me after all. My mother helped me unwrap the toy monkey who would become the best Christmas present I’ve ever received. I named him “Cocoa Puffs” after my favorite cereal. He soothed me during my hospital stay and remained my best friend through every childhood illness, injury, and loss.
While later Christmases would bring me many appreciated gifts, nothing could ever replace the comforting presence of a toy monkey name “Cocoa Puffs.”
~ Rob Donaldy
12 Extol the Lord, Jerusalem;
praise your God, Zion.
13 He strengthens the bars of your gates
and blesses your people within you.
14 He grants peace to your borders
and satisfies you with the finest of wheat.
15 He sends his command to the earth;
his word runs swiftly.
16 He spreads the snow like wool
and scatters the frost like ashes.
17 He hurls down his hail like pebbles.
Who can withstand his icy blast?
18 He sends his word and melts them;
he stirs up his breezes, and the waters flow.
19 He has revealed his word to Jacob,
his laws and decrees to Israel.
20 He has done this for no other nation;
they do not know his laws.[a]
Praise the Lord.
O God, You are the One who comforts Your people. You did that with Israel and You comfort us. We thank You for families that comfort us when we are sick and who are with us even when they cannot make things better for us. Help us to look with compassion on those who may live alone or are lonely this Christmas; for Christ’s sake. Amen.