Santa doesn’t always wear a red suit, sometimes he’s dressed in a “.com”

santa_sleighWow, this Christmas holiday was really good – but really complicated and stressful there for a bit. 5 days before Christmas I discovered that my Amazon.com order (which contained over half of my kids’ Christmas presents) left Dallas and went to Ohio.

I live in the middle of Texas.

Clearly, Ohio was the WRONG direction.

And even though this mis-direction wasn’t Amazon’s fault, but a simple mistake of the U.S.P.S. in the midst of their craziest season of the year, Amazon tried to replace my order to the best of their ability. They resent, OVERNIGHT, FREE OF CHARGE, half of my order and refunded the other half for the items that weren’t in stock.

THEN.. then!!…3 days before Christmas ALL of my packages showed up – including the one that originally went to Ohio. Amazon didn’t know it would arrive in time, or even if it would arrive, but it did. And now I had extra items and items that I had no longer paid for. But did Amazon make it complicated?

No.

They let me keep the original box, re-charged my card for the refund amount, AND they’re mailing me return labels for the other two packages (the ones they sent overnight for free, remember?) so that I don’t have to pay to send them back.

Yes, Amazon.com went out of their way to help me – with OUTSTANDING customer service – to fix a problem that wasn’t even their fault – and help my kids have a merry Christmas.

BUT, WAIT?!

Would it have been less of a Merry Christmas if they hadn’t arrived in time??

Last year’s lesson was humility, that I don’t have to have enough money for a good Christmas, that I don’t have to buy everything I want to buy for my kids, that serving others is the best gift.

It seems this year’s lesson is the same song, second verse.

No – I did NOT overspend on our Christmas budget! I learned that lesson. I learned that lesson hard. I learned it so well, I kept track of every penny with an Excel spreadsheet. I did the majority of my shopping online so that I couldn’t shop impulsively, I considered each purcase carefully,… I behaved.

And I was proud.

And pride goeth before the fall.

When I was impatiently waiting, three days before Christmas, for the gifts to arrive – I wasn’t afraid my kids wouldn’t have anything under the tree. I already had 2 of their 4 each gifts and there were gifts from other family members.. I could even go to Walmart last minute if I needed to. In fact, I never even got mad at the postal service- I mean, we seriously overload our postal service at Christmas. They can’t get EVERYTHING right!

I was frustrated, depressed, upset because all my planning, my penny counting, my excel spreadsheeting was for naught. In one wrong package scan, my hands were tied. And I had to wait. I had to, to… TRUST GOD to make it right whether we got our packages or not.

I realized that I was still fretting over the stuff and not focusing on the reason.

It got better though. By the time the packages arrived, I had given it to God. Of course, when they DID arrive it made me very happy!! But I was no longer fretting.

And Christmas morning, was very very nice indeed. For the first time, my normally late sleepers woke up before the sun. Oh yes they did. And since we weren’t expecting our family until 10:30 for the opening of the presents, we dug through the stocking and had several hours to sit and play with what Santa had brought us. Leisurely. Quietly. A sweet family moment. We added Baby Jesus to the manger, because we hadn’t done that yet. We thanked God for sending His son. We spent the entire day visiting, and at the end of the day we prayed and thanked God for his blessings, for our gifts, and for the good time with family and friends.

It was a good day.

And we all know the truth – “Santa” (or Amazon.com) is just the messenger. The gifts are from God.

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[…] made enough of an impression that last year I tackled the Christmas shopping in a competely different manner, with a completely different […]