Ask St Nicholas!
Dear Angels, is it possible that we could get a reading from St. Nicholas for our newsletter? The original Santa Claus might want to share how his legend began.
Our Angels Replied:
Yes, Child. You may always speak to whomever you want, as long as your request is for the greater good. The soul you call St. Nicholas has been with you your whole life, and he is just as busy on this side as he was on that.
Yes, I am St. Nicholas, as you call me today. I do not feel so “saintly” because as I gave on earth, I still give in heaven. It is my nature. If you need help, it is a good thing to ask any of us over here, but it is especially my work to give to children.
When I was on earth, it was a very bad time. There had been drought and several neighboring groups had had skirmishes of hate which wiped out the fields and polluted the water. I was a man of some means in that lifetime, but not rich as you would think it today. I had food stores, and a great deal of wool which I had not sold that year because the prices were low. There was no such thing as money in those days. Wealth was counted by your holdings, not your pocketbook.
The winter was very hard that year. There were sick children everywhere. In many cases the parents died and left their little ones to fend for themselves with no ability to do so. Those we brought into the keep for safety and help. But other families had little or nothing. So we dispersed some of our wealth/abundance so that they might live. I must also confess it was my wife’s idea. She had a kind and gentle heart and the ability to organize the effort. I myself was quite old and suffered with gout, but it was on my say so that it could happen.
Our people were also proud! As much as we could, we doled out food at the marketplace. They would take food because they needed it so for their children. But we needed something for the families to do for work, so the wool was given out. Our men and women were great spinners and weavers, so we had work for them to do. They would spin and weave for a fair portion, which later, when the trouble was over, we were all able to sell.
This continued for three years! There was nearly nothing left when there was a break in the drought, the men could plant, and the women had food to store for themselves again. The true miracle was, that through the wool-weaving, we could take a great deal of cloth to market. It was then all of us had good times again.
I guess you could say I was ahead of my time. Before, the vassals worked for the landholder. In my tenure, I let them work for themselves, and received a fair share of their labor. It worked better that way. My wife understood this better than I, for she had worked with women before and knew how proud they were of their goods.
Afterward, the people had the spirit of giving firmly in their hearts. They did not go back to their selfish ways, and learned the value of giving in secret. Thus the legend began. For it was not uncommon for a family to share a loaf or a bit of honey with those who had little and too many children to fill hungry bellies. This food was given in the dark of the night, and instead of looking for the giver, the parents often explained the gift on the doorstep by saying I had given it as I had done before. Others thought the “Little People” had left the present, and the account of “elves” was added. So a story grows.
Therefore, my legend is not about giving for reward. It is about giving from the heart. My dear wife should get all the praise, for it was she who did the work, and I just oversaw the stores so everything would be safe and last as long as it was needed.
Bless you dear ladies. In all this time, I have not been asked what truly happened. I am called St. Nicholas; shortened to Santa Claus. Thank you to everyone who has been keeping the spirit of giving alive for these many centuries. All combined, there is more good done in my name than you can ever imagine. I bless all who believe in sharing and giving with no thought of a reward. This is the best way.
One more thing. My good wife was called Enid.
With all my gratitude,
FAITH BUILDER: Watch for a “special gift” that you know was inspired by your angels.