Would you be surprised to hear sleigh bells in the middle of the night? The shops all closed, carolers turned in for the night, the clock tower 10 miles away most would not expect to hear sleigh bells ringing.
The children all nested in bed, no sounds anywhere in the house but the sound of wrapping paper being cut and tape as it ripped off the dispenser. I went about my usual task of 'playing Santa'!
In the silence I did not hear the clatter of hoofs on the roof top. I did not hear any 'Ho Ho Ho Merry Christmas' from St Nicolas. I did hear ...Sleigh bells ringing! I listened closely to make sure I wasn't hearing things. As the distinct sound continued I got up from my spot in the middle of the floor and looked out the front window. I saw nothing unusual! Not a creature was moving not even a mouse.
The moon glistened on the white snow. The street light down the road was dimmed from the light fall of fresh snow. I saw no lights from houses on the block in either direction.
I turned back to the room just as my six year old entered the room from the hallway. He wiped sleep from his eyes as he demanded "Mom!. You have to get in bed. Santa's here and he won't come in if your not in bed."
Even in his sleep he too had heard the sleigh bells ringing. I was at a loss for words but ushered him back to his room before he noticed the pile of unwrapped gifts in the middle of the floor. I promised to go straight to my bed across the hall.
When I could hear steady breathing from his bedroom I returned to the living room. The ringing of sleigh bells had stopped and I finished my task.
The next morning was like any other Christmas morning and nothing was said about our middle of the night visitor. With the excitement of the day and gathering with family the sleight bells ringing in the night were forgotten.
A few months later that night was brought back to mind. Several neighborhood parents were gathered by the road discussing plans for Easter. One father asked another if he was going to play the Easter Bunny too?
Come to find out his oldest daughter had been questing the existence of Santa. Not wanting her questions to spoil the fun for her younger sisters Dad found some sleigh bells and went out in the middle of the night ringing the bells under her bedroom window.
I hadn't seen him that Christmas Eve night because he was on the back side of their house. My son and I had however heard the sleight bells ringing across the two yards and the road in the silence of the night.
Yes, I have to admit for a short time in the middle of a snowy winter night even as an adult I did wonder - could it be true, was there really a Santa Claus?
There have been times in my life I felt the same about God. I couldn't see Him but there were signs around me which made me believe.
(King James Version)
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
2 Corinthians 5:7 For we walk by faith, not by sight:
1 Peter 1:7-9 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.