Around this time of year 5 or 6 years ago, we got an interesting call from our "unofficial" nephew Ryan. There was unmistakable excitement in his voice and that was not solely because he had just turned 4 or 5.

"I can't believe it!" Ryan began. "Twenty dollars for a little kid? I can't believe it!" Ryan calmed down a bit to thank his Aunt Jo Ann and me for his birthday gift.

But before Ryan signed off, he finished as excitedly as he started. "Twenty dollars for a little kid? I can't believe it!"

Years later, the memory brings a smile to my face. This year, it also brought a thought to my head.

Most of us were once as excitable and enthusiastic as Ryan was. We are uninhibited in our reactions. When something displeased us, we cried. If something struck as funny, we laughed - even those times when we knew we weren't supposed to laugh. If somebody did something nice for us, we let them know how much we appreciated it.

Then, one day, we woke up too grownup to express our feelings.

This is particularly true when it comes to God. We stop going to Him as he wants us to "as little children."

We forget that God is always with us - to comfort us when we feel sad and to rejoice with us when we are joyful.

He gives us His infinite love and offers us an eternity to spend in that love. He also gives us the freedom to love Him and to love others because He is part of them.

"I can't believe it!" Well, believe it. "All this for a little kid?" Yes, and God's graces and love are for all his children.

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The least we can do is remember to thank God for all that He gives us.