Just A Wish

[inspired by All I Really Want, by Steven Curtis Chapman]

The moonlight cut through the thin window panes and lit the piece of paper on the small wooden desk. A pencil moved and began to form words.

Dear Santa,

Ryan paused and glanced around nervously. The other boys in the room were sleeping soundly, and the pencil scratching had only alerted the mouse in the corner, who paused to watch the young lad.

Sticking his tongue out, the boy leaned forward and continued.

I’ve been really good this year.

He paused.

I’ve been really good this year. I’ve tried really hard to be good this year.

Yes. Yes, that was better.

I didn’t mean to laugh when Benji ran into the door, but it was so funny! I admit I shouldn’t have closed the door, but I just felt an urge. You know what an urge is, don’t you Santa? Mr. Wright says it’s something all little boys have. You must have been a little boy at one time.

Johnny stirred slightly and mumbled under his breath, causing Ryan to pause.

But anyway, I just wanted to write you this letter. You probably don’t remember me.

He shook his head. What was he thinking? Of course Santa knew him. Santa knew everyone.

I’ve tried this letter writing before, but it hasn’t really worked. Thought I’d try again though.

He breathed in deeply. Surely Santa would be able to predict his wish. It was the exact same thing he’d wanted for the past, he counted, four? five years? Ever since he’d learned that Santa gave good boys and girls gifts.

But he’d never gotten what he asked for. Even on years when he tried extra hard to be good, so why should this year be any different.

Oh well, he’d come this far.

I want someone who will pick me up when I fall off my bike. I want someone who will make me cookies and laugh when I put the frosting on my face instead of yelling at me. I want someone who will drive me to all my games when I get big enough to play on a team.

He touched the scar on his forehead gently and winced.

I know that sometimes I’m bad and get into fights, but maybe if I had a dad to roughhouse with, I’d get it out of my system.

The moon was slipping behind the clouds, and Ryan knew he only had seconds to finish the letter before the orphanage plunged into darkness. Again.

And from what Tommy told me when he visited here last week, a mommy would be the best thing in the world.

I want a family, please.

Signed,

Ryan

Carefully, the redheaded little boy folded his letter and stuffed it in an old envelop he’d found earlier in the afternoon. Flipping it around, he wrote one word and before running back to bed barefoot. He’d have to remember to put it in the mailbox the day.

The envelop held one word for the address: Santa.

+ ~ + ~ +

Christmas is a time of giving and remembering why we give. But it’s also a time of love and family.

For a lot of kids who are either in foster care or orphanages though, it’s just another day that reminds them that they don’t have those two special people. I’m an adoptee, and I’m beyond blessed to have people I can call Mom and Dad.

I understand a lot of us can’t afford to bring people into our homes, or maybe we’re not old enough. But think of all the other ways you can bring joy to a child or teenager who has very little.

Angel Tree, Samaritan’s Purse, and Operation Christmas Child are all ways you can help out- Even though I’m not sure when the deadline is, and it might have already passed. . . details.

Just remember the blessing of family and friends this Christmas, ‘ey?

Stay warm, friends (:

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