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A long time ago my Father told me about a book he had once read.

The book had been required reading for his teaching degree.

He told me the following story, and he told it well.

To this day I can remember how it’s profound wisdom humbled me.

The only thing that my Father could not remember about this story was the title of the book and who wrote it.

Should you recognize this story and happen to know it’s title and/or author, please let me know….

This story begins with a family living high in the rural mountains. A farmer lived in a small house with his wife and son.

They raised chickens and goats and owned several cows.

They lived off the land.

In the book, the young boy talks about the family preparations for Christmas.

This young boy is anticipating the impending trip into town which will be made the following day. The journey into town will be a long arduous trek down the mountain made with a horse and a donkey.

Anticipation of this trip…

…brought him joy.

Tomorrow morning, he told himself… everyone will rise very early. Mother will have my clean clothes all prepared.

The next day, as Father and Son prepare to leave, Mother handed her son the list of items needed to do the Christmas baking.

The list was simple and short.

He opened a piece of paper and read what was written on it.

Sugar, flour, spices, oranges, nuts, vanilla.

As he read her list…

…he felt joy.

Warmly bundled they began their long journey down the mountain. The trip into town did not happen often but when it did the boy really enjoyed the time he spent with his father.

As they meandered through the crunchy snow on the downward trail…

…he felt joy.

Upon arriving into town they entered the dry goods store with shopping list in hand.

The young boy always enjoyed wandering through the store. There was so many lovely things to look at, so many practical things to wish for.

Just being inside the store…

…brought him joy.

Once all the items had been procured, Father and son returned to the horse and donkey and begin their long slow trip back up the mountain to their home.

Outside, it was much colder now. But the boy was comfortably at ease in spite of the cold weather because of all his warm clothing. He was grateful for his Father’s old coat and his Mother’s knitted sweater, mitts, hat, gloves and socks.

And as he thought of his Mother knitting beside the fire…

…it brought him joy.

At last, Father and son arrived home again.

The newly purchased items were ceremoniously carried inside the house and presented to Mother.

The boy reveled in his Mother’s happiness and he felt blessed to have such wonderful parents.

And as his mind acknowledged the love he had for his family…

…he felt great joy.

In the next two days the smell of his Mother’s baking filled the entire house.

His senses were filled with cinnamon, nutmeg, orange and vanilla.

And as he helped his Mother prepare the dough for baking, he marvelled at how silky the flour and butter felt as he ran it through his fingers.

And this too…

…brought him joy.

As he watched the cookies warming themselves in the oven he thought his heart would burst with Christmas joy.

It was Christmas Eve, and he was truly happy.

Then, the young boy thought to himself:

I can only imagine all the children who are more fortunate than I…

…These children whose parents can provide them with money, expensive clothes and toys, and big fancy houses filled with beautiful furniture.

These children who have a hundred times the possessions that I have…

Just think of how much happier they must be than I am right now…

❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

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