In our possession driven society it is easy to be very aware of our lack when it comes to Christmas. We may lack the funds to buy what our children want most on their list. We may not be able to buy anything for our spouse because all money is going towards the kids and/or the bills. It is easy to let these facts rob us of our Merry in regards to Christmas.
I’ll never forget one Christmas when Tom needed back surgery. He had been putting it off for nearly a year, but when it got to where he could no longer sit for any length of time, having a desk job, he knew he had to do something. The surgery was set for the day after Thanksgiving, since he would already have that day off from work, it seemed the best time. We planned ahead by purchasing our live Christmas tree the day before Thanksgiving at the only tree lot open, which happened to be one of the more expensive lots. We didn’t care; we were happy to have a tree even if it was smaller than we normally preferred. We also purchased a new tree stand. I was so glad Tom was able to help me put the tree up and decorate it with the lights. We were quite proud of ourselves for being ahead of the game.
Tom’s surgery went well. While he was recovering on the couch, the kids and I put our ornaments on the tree. It was beautiful. The next morning I walked by the tree and heard a squish. Carpet isn’t supposed to squish.
Our brand new tree stand that held a couple of gallons of water had a huge crack in it. And Christmas was nearly four weeks away – our tree would never make it that long alive without water. But Tom was recovering and there was no way for us to fix what was broken.
The next day I went to the Christmas tree lot where we purchased our tree in order to get a new stand. When I told the owner our story, he gladly gave us a new stand and told us to come back next year and he’d take care of us.
That was very kind of him, but it didn’t help us this Christmas. Yet, I was grateful we had purchased our tree from a reputable Christmas tree dealer. Had we gone to where we usually did, I’m certain they wouldn’t have been as understanding.
Fast forward to the following Christmas. Tom’s back was 100% healed, but his job was not doing as well. There would be no Christmas bonus that year, and since we lived paycheck to paycheck this meant there would be no Christmas presents for us. Thankfully, I was an avid bargain shopper at garage sales and thrift stores, so our children wouldn’t lack for gifts, but there was no way we could ever afford a tree.
Then, we remembered! The owner of the tree lot had told us to come back next year – and it was next year. Could it be? Would he remember? We had to try. When we drove to the lot we had no idea of the blessing we were about to receive. The man certainly remembered us.
He smiled and said, “Pick out any tree on the lot!”
“Any tree?” We couldn’t believe it.
He nodded and led us to some of the nicest ones he had.
Suffice it to say we had the best tree we had ever had and it was the year when we didn’t have a cent to buy it with. God cares about our need. Even those we may think aren’t needs at all. This is how we love to treat our children, and this is how God takes care of us when we find ourselves lacking.
So if you are in a place of lack this Christmas, and you’re tempted to let it rob the Merry from your Christmas, we encourage you to pray and ask God to help you. Just as we had no idea how He would provide for us, may you have a similar story to tell this time next year!