“What’s the best Christmas gift you received as a child?” the host posed the question. Heads cocked to the side and eyes stared into the distance, each one lost in a private reel of childhood memories. Slowly, smiles formed and eyes sparkled with visions of their perfect gift.
Bicycles, matchbox cars, play kitchens, and cabbage patch dolls made the list. Mine was Cinderella. She arrived Christmas morning when I was seven years old. Almost as big as me, she stood two feet tall and wore a baby blue ball gown. Silver threads sparkled through the ruffled blue netting overlay. A rhinestone crown graced her blond hair, teardrop pearl earrings adorned her ears and plastic “glass” slippers revealed red-pedicured toes. I adopted her as my best friend and playmate.
Together we sipped tea after school and danced at “balls” to whatever tune the radio played. She sat in my lap while I read to her every night, and she shared my pillow at bedtime.
Before I lost track of Cinderella, I wore her to tatters. I know because last summer, when my husband and I cleaned our attic she surfaced again. Tossed in the bottom of an unmarked and crumbled brown box, her beauty worn away by time and companionship.
Cinderella’s 24 inches were now small against my 5’7″ frame. Her feet bare of slippers, lost to some handsome prince, I’m sure. The blue gown was faded and wrinkled, the netting torn on one side. Her hair, worn thin in one spot and dulled with age, lay stiff like stacked hay. Somewhere she lost her crown and dirt smudged her arms.
“Well, she’s seen better days. Goodwill or trash?” my husband asked as he rummaged through another box.
But I didn’t hear him. I placed her in a new box, cradled in fresh, white tissue. I cherished her and could never part with my friend who transformed me from a skinny, stringy-haired waif to a young lady. She reminded me … like her, though worn and wrinkled now, I am still the princess of a King.
The angel said to them, “…I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ, the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11, NIV)
©2011 Gloria Ashby. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail.