Presents should have presence.

Some of the best gifts I received during childhood and later in life weren't necessarily expensive. They were memorable.

I got my own radio when I was eight. A tennis racket when I was 13. A paint job and vinyl top for my car when I was 17.

It's likely that we've each received hundreds of gifts both large and small during our lifetimes, but which ones can you name and do you remember who gave them to you and when?

Most parents and grandparents try to give kids what they ask for, as long as it's a reasonable request.

But, I don't think they ever realize the life-long impact of even the smallest gift when they wrap it and place it under the tree.

At age 8, I received my own transistor radio. I could listen to voices from great distances in the privacy of my room. Songs by Three Dog Night and The Grass Roots debuted to the world and me through the small speaker of my very own Sony.

The tennis racket that was made of aluminum was a breakthrough at the time. It gave me many years of enjoyment. It was also the time in my life when I was the most physically fit I've ever been.

The paint job and vinyl top on my '72 Olds Cutlass Supreme turned heads. It's also the car that carried my friends and me on adventures that included concerts, movies and sitting on the hood at midnight with our backs against the windshield staring at the stars.

My two sons both arrived just prior to Christmas, four years apart. They've both grown into fine, responsible young men, which pleases me very much.

My grandparents are long gone, but I thank them for the radio, which I still have and still works. My parents gave me the tennis racket and the new look for the Cutlass. My parents are still with us, which is also a gift.

But the best present I’ve received is my wife. God gave her to me around Christmas time at a point in life when I really needed a gift. He wrapped her in the most beautiful package and filled her with kindness, patience and love.

Because of her and Him, every morning when I wake up, it's Christmas.