Hi. I’m Ken Jones, and this is a Classic State of Mind, with a true story about … The Christmas Card.
It was nearly Christmas, and a man I know well was grateful when Friday evening finally came. It had been a very long week. When he arrived home that night, he saw his wife sitting on the edge of the bed, with tearful red eyes. He knocked gently as he entered the room, and sat down beside her on the bed, asking her what was the matter.
“I’m going to have a baby in less than two months, and we have no money. We have no medical insurance and no way to pay the doctor and I’m worried.” Pregnant and about to deliver their first child. Feeling the baby kick within reminded her—daily, minute-by-minute—that the moment was coming and nearly upon them when a baby would enter their world.
How would they pay for this baby?
The man wanted very much to comfort and assure his wife. He held her in his arms for a while and then began to pray. “Lord, we have a baby coming in a few weeks, now, and we can’t see any way we’ll be able to pay the hospital bill. We’ve never had a baby before, and that makes us afraid. We believe You and Your Word, Your promise that You won’t leave us alone. We believe it, Lord. I believe it . . . but I can’t see it.
“Never in my entire life have I ever asked you for a sign, Lord; I’m not even sure I believe in asking for signs. But we need a sign from You that everything is under Your control. Forgive my lack of faith, but if You could give us some indication that everything will be okay, I’d sure appreciate it. I can hardly stand to see my wife worry like this.”
The prayer the man prayed was simple and ineloquent. That night they attended a Christmas gathering at the home of some friends. During the evening, the hostess of the party gave the couple a card—a Christmas card that had been dropped off at the house earlier in the evening for them. She did not know the man who left the card, but his instructions to her were to deliver it to the young couple. The young husband slipped it in his jacket pocket without opening it.
When they arrived home, later that night, he remembered the card, opened it, and read its simple message aloud:
Dear Brother and Sister,
Please accept this as a sign from the Lord that everything is going to be fine, and that God has everything under control.
Tucked inside the envelope with the card was a five-dollar bill. Not five hundred, nor five thousand; five-dollar bill inside a priceless note that was unsigned.
The young couple looked at the card for a long while before they finally turned out the light and went to sleep. But as they drifted off to sleep, they marveled at the happenings of the night. Like Mary of old, they “pondered these things” in their hearts.
Six weeks later, their first child was born. The new mother held the baby in her arms as the nurse wheeled her to the door and the waiting car. The proud husband followed along behind.
In his pocket were two pieces of paper. One was a receipt from the hospital for the room charges and delivery fees, marked “paid in full.” Money for the birth had been provided from totally unexpected sources over the last six weeks, gifts from family and friends and opportunities for the young man to earn extra wages. The other was a Christmas card, worn and tattered and well read. God had delivered on two counts: a fine son and a wonderfully fulfilled promise.
Isa. 49:15 had been proven true, once again:
Can a woman forget nursing her child,
And not have compassion on the son of her womb?
Surely they may forget,
Yet I will not forget you.