Today our Christmas tree comes down. It’s a big job and I’m still trying to pump myself up to do it. Has to be done, it’s getting too dry. But we always love our Christmas tree, and once it’s gone, we’ll miss it for a while.
The thing we want, though, is to make this Christmas work all year, by God’s sovereign grace, in answer to our prayers–to make it carry on all the way to Christmas 2019, drawing people’s hearts to Jesus Christ Our Lord, amen.
Patty doesn’t like to give up on something, once she starts: so she finally did figure out how to post a picture of our Christmas tree, and here it is. It’d be much nicer if we ever had any sunlight coming in through our windows, but that’s been very hard to come by lately.
The Elf on top used to sit on my Grammy’s Christmas tree, at least 50 years ago. And the lights are from my Grandpa’s store that he had in the 1930s–and they all still work.
I have just finished decorating our Christmas tree, and a fair piece of the living room, too. Even when we set up the tree in its stand the day before, it’s still a two-hour job. My father used to do it all on Christmas Eve, start to finish, after us kids were sent to bed. We’d come down exceedingly early on Christmas morning, and there would be the fully-decorated tree standing in the living room, with wrapped presents under it.
It’s such a big job because we have so many ornaments, all if them family heirlooms going back many years. I know the story behind each and every one of them. The important thing is to remember the loved ones who gave them to us, because they’ve all passed on by now, not many of us left. Because Jesus Christ is come in the flesh, we know we can trust God’s promises: we know we will all be reunited in His kingdom, and enjoy eternal life.
We wanted to take a picture of our tree and post it here, but haven’t yet discovered how to do it. Patty thought she knew, but wasn’t able to pull it off. Well, we may yet find out: I’m not about to take the tree down just after I put it up.
Next stop: our traditional Christmas Eve dinner–roast duck.
Oh, for a hatchback! That’d make this job an awful lot easier.
For many years we got our Christmas tree at a local nursery where my family had always bought our tree, going back to when I was a baby. But the town got rid of it, and now we have to go to Home Depot. We loaded most of the tree into the trunk and tied the trunk down. Happily, this time it didn’t pop open again.
Along the way, we acquired a fresh duck for Christmas dinner–so we are almost all ready. All I’ve got left to do is wrap presents. Then it’s just a matter of vacuuming the floor and setting up the tree. We’ll trim it on Christmas Eve. We have a string of tree lights originally from my Grandpa’s store in the 1930s: they all still work. Every one of our ornaments has a story and a history. We use them all.
Christmas and Easter, Christ’s birth, His death and resurrection, are the fulfillment of the most profound hope of the human race. It’s fitting that we celebrate these holy days. They ought to be the high spots of the year, to be remembered and cherished all throughout the year, in all twelve months.
Mark Rushdoony wrote this for the Chalcedon magazine in 2001, and it will serve us well today. It’s a little long, but stick with it: given the fallen world’s growing hostility to Christian faith, we want to hang on to Christmas–and reclaim it for Our Lord and for His people.
Simply put, it’s okay for us to have a Christmas tree. Throughout the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, the tree symbolizes the Tree of Life: and the Tree of Life is also Jesus Christ. That trees have been misused by pagans, unbelievers, and secularists does not invalidate it as a Christian symbol. It’s ours, God gave it to us, and we ought to keep it.
I took down our Christmas tree this morning and put all the ornaments away. Then vacuumed. It’s a big job, and I’m pooped. But then it’s an even bigger job to set it up. Why do we do it?
First we put on the lights. We use lights from the store Grandpa had in the 1930s, and they all still work. Then there’s a ton of ornaments to put on. Each and every one of our ornaments has a story: they’re a kind of history of our family. They bring vividly to mind the people we’ve loved, and good times shared with them. You might wonder what a Christmas tree has to do with the birth of Jesus Christ Our Savior. But God ordained the family, God loves the family, and it’s one of those things that His Son came to earth to save.
I put the tree out on the curb with a prayer that this past Christmas will continue to work throughout the year, powerfully drawing our hearts to Jesus Christ Our Lord: Amen.