Today is December 25th. Some of us are celebrating Christmas. Some of us are celebrating Hanukkah. Some of us might not be celebrating anything, but we hope that the magic of the season is felt by all. On today’s episode we recalled a funny memory from a brainstorm session we had last Christmas. And then we shared a very special story that our friend Brandi shared with us.
But before we share the story, we have to share some BREAKING NEWS with you!!! For those of you who heard us discuss the devastating realization that we had been singing lyrics to Keith Urban’s “You’ll think of me” song incorrectly all these years…. guess what. We were NOT wrong! It turns out we were also not the only people who scratched their heads about it over the years. Check out this tweet for your proof!
Ok. Now back to the meaning for today and the reason behind the season!
It is YOUR stories that inspire us and others, and we feel so blessed to share them. We hope that you enjoy this amazing story that teaches us all a very important lesson. Without further ado, we present to you:
DOING THE RIGHT THING IS ITS OWN REWARD | A Christmas Story
Would you believe me if I told you that one of my BEST Christmas gifts was a phone call? It came on Christmas Eve from a woman I had never met. Here’s the story…
In 2010 when our children were 9, 7 and 4, my husband and I took them to Chicago in early December. Our oldest, Joe, had just received an iPod for his 9th birthday and was SO excited. He wanted to take his iPod with him everywhere, but we asked him to leave his iPod at the hotel so he wouldn’t lose it. At the end of our fun day of riding rides, ice skating and playing games at Navy Pier, we started to get into a cab and head to a lovely restaurant for dinner. That’s when Joe reached into his pocket and realized his iPod was missing. He had snuck his iPod into his pocket instead of leaving it at the hotel. We went back to Navy Pier and searched everywhere, but the iPod was no where to be found. We left our name at the lost and found desk in hopes it would be returned. We were very upset with Joe and Joe was very upset too.
By the time we left for dinner again it suddenly dawned on me that I could use the “Find my iPhone” app on my phone and look up the location of the missing iPod. I patiently waited for the location to show up on my phone. To my surprise, Joe’s iPod was in a house, in a neighborhood about 30 minutes from where Joe had lost it. My next idea was to send a text to the missing iPod and maybe someone would respond! I texted, “hi. I’m looking for my son’s iPod and I’m hoping you can tell me where I can find it.” I didn’t get an answer or response, but I could see the message had been read. I texted again and again with no response. I started to get very angry and texted “I know where you are with my son’s iPod and we are going to come and get it right now or call the police.” A few minutes later, I got a phone call from a woman. (No, this is NOT the phone call that was my favorite Christmas gift.) The woman was very difficult to understand and did not speak English very well, but from what I could understand, her son had found the iPod at Navy Pier and decided to take it home. He got scared once we said we were going to call the police, so he gave it to his Mom and explained to her what he had done. She was calling to let me know they wanted to return the iPod. We arranged for FED EX to pick up the iPod and soon it was returned to Joe in perfect condition.
I started to think about that other little boy and how excited he must have been to find an iPod and then how disappointed he must have been to have to return it. I started to think about how that boy wasn’t that different than my own little boy, Joe. They had both made a poor choice. Joe made a poor choice when he decided to take the iPod out of the hotel and the other little boy had made a poor choice when he decided to try and keep the iPod he had found. I started to think about how that family might not be able to afford iPods, steak dinners, a day of games and rides at Navy Pier, and a stay in a nice hotel. But, they still had courage to do the right thing and return the iPod. It was then that we decided to send that little boy his very own iPod. We ordered it online and had it sent right before Christmas. We didn’t really think much about it after that and soon it was time for our own Christmas celebrations. Our minds were filled with all things Christmas, especially all the gifts we would be opening.
Before we knew it it was Christmas Eve. We went to Mass, opened a few gifts, enjoyed a meal with family and were just sitting down to play a game when my phone rang. I answered the unknown number and it was a woman who was crying. It was that little boy’s mom and she and her son had just opened the package to find the iPod and read our note of thanks. She told me she could NEVER afford such a nice gift for her son and she wanted us to know how grateful she was for the gift. She was crying tears of joy. I could hear her son cheering with excitement in the background. After many more thank you’s from their family, I hung up and shared the story with my entire family. We all felt their joy and suddenly it didn’t matter what gifts we had already opened or what gifts we would open the next morning. We had already received the best gift, that phone call.
And that… is the reason for the season. The gifts that fill our hearts with love and joy and happiness and help guide us to the reason for the season.
Enjoy the time with your loved ones today and always!