A Perfect Gift

It's now dog-eared, cracked, and faded, but it was …

The peaceful notes of "O Little Town of Bethlehem" drifted through my open window. Inside, the pine aroma from a sparkling Christmas tree filled the air. Warmth from a blazing fire should have added to the season's joy, but I glumly stared at the flames.

Christmas was only three days away, and I could think of nothing to give the girl I'd soon marry. It was our first Christmas together, and I wanted a gift that would let her know how much I loved her. I'd thought of a thousand things, but those I could afford weren't worthy of such a special person, and the things I wanted to give her were beyond my limited resources. What could I do?

I prayed, "Lord, this Christmas you're giving me the girl of my dreams to be my wife. Surely there's something special I can give her that will confirm your love for us and our love for each other."

The fire in the fireplace crackled and burned more brightly. Then it was as if the flames ignited something in my heart. I'd thought of the perfect gift.

My heart bursting with joy, I brought the present home and carefully wrapped it. I could hardly wait to give it to her. Finally it was Christmas Eve, and we were alone in her living room. The flames on the hearth burned brightly, augmenting the warmth of my love as I handed my present to her.

The tag read: With all my love, to God's most precious gift to me this Christmas. Carefully she removed the wrapping paper. "I love it! I've always wanted this," she said, eyes sparkling as she lifted the Bible from the box and tenderly held it close.

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