Good And Perfect Gifts (A Special Memory Christmas Memory From Lisa Wingate)

Happy Monday, Everyone!  I don’t know about all of you, but this time of the year we seem to meet ourselves coming and going.  Every once in a while, in the hustle and bustle, something happens that stops the wild whirl and brings home the true meaning of the season.  Today on the porch, I thought I’d share the story of one of those moments.


The Ring

One of the most meaningful Christmas gift I ever received didn’t come from a store shelf.  It came from a Wal-mart gumball machine.  In terms of jewelry, it was not pricey.  It was made of silver-coated plastic and sported a pink gemstone of unknown origin.  The ring cost exactly twenty-five cents, a single quarter, but it was all a four-year-old boy had in his pocket.  He had to beg for the money while waiting rather impatiently in the checkout line after a long day of last-minute holiday shopping.  

I’ll never know, of course, what happened at the exact moment he stood in front of the potpourri of shiny gumball machines. I have imagined that moment many times, when I come across the pink diamond ring nestled among more expensive things in my jewelry box.  

I picture the little boy in his Big Smith overalls and cowboy boots, standing in front of the machines, his chubby little fingers caressing the quarter as he considers Superballs, and Batman tattoos, and everlasting Gobstoppers.  I see his eyes narrow as he weighs the possibilities.  His mouth waters as he thinks of sour straws and Skittles.  Then he sees the rings, and he imagines how thrilled his mom would be to have something so fine–how beautiful it would look on her finger at church on Sunday.  Most certainly, everyone there would admire it.  His mom will be the best-dressed mom in the place, the most special mom of all.  If he buys the ring.

 He considers the options again–all the temptations that are just a turn of the crank away.  And then he remembers that it’s almost Christmas.  He puts the quarter carefully into the jewelry machine, turns the handle, waits with anticipation as the plastic bubble drops into the hatch below.  When it does, he grabs it, peeks inside.  It’s everything he’d imagined.  It’s perfect.  

He closes both hands around it, runs back to the checkout stand, holds it up, smiles and says, “Mommy, I gotted you a trit-mas pres-nit.”  In that moment, gumballs and skittles, and Batman tattoos are the furthest things from his mind.  It’s Christmas, after all, and his heart tells him that Christmas isn’t about what getting what you want.  It’s about giving the most good and perfect gift, in celebration of the Good and Perfect Gift that was given to us in a tiny stable, in a town with a name he can never quite pronounce, a long, long time ago, in a place even farther away than Grandma’s house.

Blessings, All,



Question of the day: What about you?  Do you remember a special moment that paused the hustle and bustle and brought home the true meaning of Christmas?


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  1. Sharon says

    I remember a “jewelry” box made from a cigar box. It had macaroni and split peas arranged all over the top, a school project. A coat of gold spray paint just set it off and it appeared under the tree all wrapped in Christmas paper. It made several moves and had a special place on my dresser top for so many years.

  2. says

    What a beautiful story, Lisa. I know you will cherish that priceless “gem” forever. I think about Miss A presenting me with something like that, and my heart feels like it could explode with love! :)

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Hugs, Jolina! You have many many pink rings ahead of you. Enjoy them all as they come. Gumball jewelry is sometimes the most precious kind!

  3. Shellie says

    Thank you for a super sweet porch visit to kick off this Monday. I loved this story, Lisa. :) Those are the moments we hold close forever!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Yes they are, Shellie! I know you have treasures from your girls and now from your grands. You are a lucky woman!


  4. says

    I loved this story, Lisa! I have several such treasures myself. Those special little gifts our children give us are indeed good and perfect, given from the heart with unconditional love!

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Britney thanks for joining us today! We treasure you here. Yes, those gifts from our children are the good and perfect gifts of pure love ;)

  5. MaryAnn says

    This story made me think of when my daughter was younger, don’t remember her exact age. She had been shopping with grandma and came home with presents for her dad and I. She had a real hard time with keeping a secret and wanted to tell mW what they had gotten me. I told her we shoulet it be a surprise. Her reply “But mom, it’s a necklace!”

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Awww… what a sweet story! My younger son had a hard time keeping gifts a secret. He always wanted to tell me… which only means that he takes after his mama ;)

  6. Melanie Backus says

    I love your story. I can just see that little boy putting his quarter in that machine for the finest treasure ever. Our children are blessings and then they grow up, get married, have their own blessings and bless us with the grandest blessings ever. Life is good. Sweet little treasures mean more to us than the finest gifts ever bought. Love abounds.

    • Lisa Wingate says

      Hi Melanie! Yes these are the sweetest treasures of all. I miss that little boy but I treasure the big man-child who took his place!

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