I saw a post the other day on Facebook. I don’t remember by whom, but all I saw was, “Lessons from a Christmas tree.” I chose to read no further, for the title alone sparked all sorts of ideas for blog articles. So far, I’m at 5 posts and I think I’m done writing them. But who knows? They’ll be spread throughout this month. Please chime in with your own thoughts! Here are the posts for the other articles: Lesson 1, Lesson 2, Lesson 3, Lesson 4.
Have you ever noticed how a Christmas tree begs attention? Seriously, even without lights it will attract the eye of anyone entering the room.
(Guys, don’t leave. There’s a message here for you as well.)
Those of you who are women, don’t we do something of the same thing? We wear nice clothes meant to be appealing and keep our hair cut and groomed in a pleasing style. We might use make up to hide flaws or accent virtues in our appearance and don jewelry that is special to us or compliments our attire.
And why do we do this? Because we intrinsically want to look our best when we are noticed. Even if we are the type that doesn’t really like the attention. If we get it, we want the appraisal to be a positive one, right?
And truly, there is nothing wrong with that. But the lesson of the Christmas tree goes deeper.
Now I’ve used a word that I want to readdress. Begs. When I used it, I was thinking in more magnetic terms. That the tree caught the notice of people.
But the tree doesn’t try to catch the attention. The tree just stands. With it stands the beauty that God infused in it as well as the decorations that people had placed on it.
True beauty lies within a person. The decorations are the experiences that have molded the life. The lights are the Spiritual fruit that displays with every action taken and the daily interactions with others. Attention is caught by good works and an attitude of joy.
I’m reminded of a time when I was in the grocery store. It was rather late and there was a woman there wanting to check out with just one item. She placed it on the conveyor belt and the clerk reached up and switched the light off of his register. He put a closed sign in front of her single item and scowled at her without saying a thing. (I know, I was shocked. Never happened to see that clerk again, but I digress.)
The man behind her began cussing out the clerk. There weren’t any other lanes open so no place to check out. A manager stepped over and opened the next line. The man in line apologized to the woman. She had a young child with her. And the woman turned to him and said something like, sounds like you’ve had a hard day. The man hung his head and made a comment that I couldn’t hear. Next thing I knew the lady had laid her hand on his shoulder and was praying aloud for him. Right there in the check out line. It was short and stunning. Then she picked up her single small bag and left with her child without looking back.
The man was as stunned as I was. Tears ran down his face. The manager’s face had reddened. Neither spoke a word, but obviously both were affected. By a person unafraid to sparkle.
Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Your turn: When was the last time that you sparkled? How was it received?
The next lesson will be HERE when it posts.