Every year of my childhood (Okay, fine, I still make one), I made an extensive Christmas list for my parents so that they got me exactly what I wanted. From November till Christmas, I had a daily lunch time ritual of starring and circling any item I might remotely want in every catalog that came in the mail that day. I wasn’t leaving any room for guessing when it came to Christmas presents. Our five-year-old daughter, Evie, has started making her own list this year. If she sees a commercial of an item she wants, she proclaims. “Add that to my Christmas list, mommy.” She will ask to browse Amazon for toys to go on her digital list. On the daily she is reminding me of what she needs to have for Christmas, what I can’t forget to buy her, and what she has asked Nana and Papa to give her.

What she doesn’t understand, and will not until Christmas Eve, is that she isn’t getting any of the presents off her list from her daddy and me. After telling me over and over again not to forget the life size Rapunzel doll, I broke the news to her, “Sweetie, mommy and daddy already bought your Christmas present, and it’s something you could never guess! It’s a secret, but trust me you’re going to love it!”

She cocked her head to the left, furrowed her brow, scrunched her nose, and said, “Hu?” That one little sound and expression spoke a thousand words: Mommy, what in the world are you talking about? I know what I need and it’s obviously a life size Rapunzel doll. How could you have picked out any better present? You totally don’t get it.

How often do we treat our prayers to God like mile long Christmas lists, acting like we know what we need and when we need it? Obviously, God is crazy to not pick from our list and give it to us when we see fit. He’d definitely be off His rocker to choose something NOT on the list. This is what my Christmas list to God would look like this year:
1.      A baby in 9 months
2.      Private practice (therapy) in the spring
3.      A second car that runs now
4.      Husband has a full-time job yesterday
5.      I get to stay home tomorrow
6.      Book publishing gig as soon as my book is written (or before)
7.      House in the country in three years
8.      Farm with the house
9.      No more pain, suffering, or worry

Not too much, right?

What we don’t understand along with Evie is that Disney World is waiting. Just like a parent during the Christmas season, God hears what we long and even beg for. He knows the desires of our hearts. I even bet He wishes He could spoil the secret, but deep down He has something bigger and better than our little hearts could ever imagine or dream up.

Matthew 7:7-11 states,
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”

            Just as though Evie’s father and I, sinners of this world, know how to give her a good Christmas gift—fantastic gift really—our Father, sinless and omniscient, knows how to give us good gifts when we ask. A surprise trip to Disney World, a gift she’d never think to ask for let alone imagine come true will happen on Christmas Eve. I’m counting down the days and shaking with excitement just thinking about the moment we get to tell her about her big Christmas present. I daydream about that day and how it’ll play out. I can’t help but think our heavenly Father oozes with excitement until the day He gets to see His plan for our lives play out. The prayers we’ve begged and pleaded, the tears we’ve shed time and time again, the heart ache and sorrow all finally redeemed. Maybe the plan wasn’t what we asked for, maybe it wasn’t even on our list, but He can guarantee it’ll bigger and better than anything we could ever imagine our dream up.  So, we must patiently and longingly wait, because our Disney World is waiting.


  1. So many truth bombs in there! I love this and I love your sweet heart. And I love that you're going to Disney! I cannot wait to see her reaction!