As many close to me know….
I work at a Christian company designing websites and graphics for churches. During the holiday season, I’ve also been lectured by several pastors, while on the phone with them, that Christmas trees are a pagan concept and have no place in a Christian home. Some go so far as to say the Christmas celebration on the 25th of December, is a not a christian concept but derived from a winter solstice pagan celebration as a substitute to get people to come to church instead.. that Jesus couldn’t have been born in winter and blah, blah, blah….They are quite militant about it.
Nevertheless, I believe God looks at the heart, so as I began to get my tree ready this year, a lot of thoughts came to my heart about Christmas, trees and the whole celebration.
I started by setting up my smaller of the two trees, and carefully unwrapping all of my ornaments and lights. As usual, several strands didn’t work, so I pieced together what I had, as you can see! I’m not fond of the LED’s due to the brightness but I’m working through that phobia. It’s a flocked tree, artificial, but still looks nice after several years.
I do love the blue and white together, though the white, being permanently attached to the tree and and only working halfway, and the blue here and there. I love the blue, it’s a favorite of my husband Craig, and of my deceased first husband. It’s also very peaceful and makes my heart think about that very first Christmas, in the night with the star in the east. I think of the shepherds with their flocks and the angels. Which then makes me think I need to add some sheep to the mix!
As I unwrapped the ornaments, it brought back so many memories of my life over the past almost 40 years of having my own home. The ornaments all represented someone in my life, or something I made each year. I have handmade stitchery ornaments from my mom along with several special ones she purchased as gifts for me. Also, ornaments placed on gift packages from my sisters, and many from my late husband, my daughter and son in law. There are some from special friends and some I had also purchased from craft shows I attended over the years. I’ve also been blessed to obtain a small Christmas village from Craig’s mom after she passed away. They all brought back such warm memories. I know my tree looks a tad messy, old pearls and lots of hand made things, but what a blessing to have these reminders from years past! I just couldn’t have it any other way!
It occurred to me then, that God uses trees! Of course there was the tree of life, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, then the “tree” that Jesus was hung on and gave his life for us. There was Zacchaeus climbing up in the sycamore tree to get Jesus attention. And today God used my tree to get my attention and to bless my heart.
I think God must be happy with me having a Christmas tree to celebrate the birth of His son, our Lord Jesus! Because He reminds me of every year of my life, that He has always been there, that He loves me and wants me to be happy! I remember our Christmas trees as I grew up, whether flocked, Charlie Brown style or artificial! How my mom made decorating a tree so special. And though my family isn’t always interested in helping me, it’s a special holiday time for me and Jesus.
It then occurred to me, how sad it must be for those poor Christians that are so caught up in the law, that they miss out on the true joy of why God sent his Son! That there is no wrong way to celebrate the birth of Christ, as long as it glorifies Him and brings us closer to Him. That the focus is on Jesus and what His coming meant. So dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, enjoy your tree if you like having it, and let it remind you of God’s mercy and grace in your life, that we will all one day be together with Him! Merry Christmas!