Our Christmas tree died this year. I know, I know. They are already dead when we get them, but usually the live trees that we buy last at least until Christmas.
This year, the tree started dropping needles a week before Christmas. It was almost comical. A few days ago, I was resting on the couch and I was startled by the dropping of an ornament. Fortunately, it didn’t break, but I was a bit frightened, to say the least.
Apparently, one main vendor in Houston has been taking some heat for all of their trees dying, but for me, I’m not angry. I’m sure they are doing the absolute best that they can.
For me, this tree was a helpful reminder that the hope of Christmas isn’t found in a beautiful tree, the presents, the food, or even the family. All of those things are gifts that remind us of the Giver, but they aren’t the real Gift.
This dead tree reminded me that I am often given over to idol worship, in that, I place my hope, affections, and allegiance in things that may, in fact, be good, but were never meant to be the best.
I pray that our idols would quickly “lose their needles” as it were, to expose the death that we are giving our worship to. That in this moment, we wouldn’t begin scurrying about looking for the next tree until it dies, but instead, that we would return to the very Source of life and rest in the fact that Jesus is the gift. He is the prize. He is the Tree of Life.