Tag Archive | Christmas Tree ornaments and decorations

Sharing the Gospel with the Christmas Tree

 

 

Our first Christmas tree as a “family”. Mom and “Dad Hinchee” were married in April, 1964. I moved from my grandparents home and into our new apartment when school started. A new home, a new school and a new name. I morphed from Kathy Smith to Kathy Hinchee. It took a while for us to feel like a family. It must have been around Christmas time. Jerry (Dad Hinchee) cut two scotch pine trees and wired them together to make our very first Christmas tree – just as two “families” became one.

The Lord impressed upon my heart about 35 years ago that a Christmas tree could be more than just something to look pretty. In the middle of the night, I awoke and grabbed my Bible, paper and pen and have been sharing the Christmas Tree Gospel ever since.

I’m sure you have heard this before and have used the tree and lights to lead others to Christ. For this reason, I choose to exclude the jolly old elf and instead, focus on the King of King and Lord of Lords. His birth and His love for – you!

(This is a re-blog from last year. Since I have been posting about Christmas trees and cats, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to once more share the Gospel with the Christmas tree.)

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Have you ever considered using your Christmas tree as a witnessing tool? I used to love using a small Christmas tree to present the Gospel to children.

  • First, we discussed the evergreen tree which reminds us of eternal life. It is ever green with sap running through it (before it is cut down)
  •  The shape of the tree points to God.
  • Of course, the tree must be in a stand to remain upright, as we need The Lord Jesus as our firm foundation.

The Next thing thing I would do (especially in Awana at night)  is to have someone turn out the lights so that the room would be dark – just as the darkness of sin. The world was in darkness until the Savior came.  I would then turn on the tree lights. White lights because they shine brighter then red, blue, green or even yellow lights.

  • The lights on the tree remind us that Jesus is the Light of the world. “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world; he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
  • The lights also remind us that we are to let Him shine through us ”Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
  • The lights also remind me that there will be no need of sun or moon in Heaven; for Jesus is the light. “And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it; and the Lamb is the light thereof.” (Revelation 21:23)
  • Gold decorations & tinsel remind me of the streets of gold in Heaven. (Rev. 21:21)
  • Red decorations remind us that Jesus was born to die.  He shed His blood that we may be saved.  He paid the penalty for my sin. (John 3:16)
  • White on the tree reminds me that he washed me white as snow.
  • The star reminds us of the Bethlehem star which signified the birth of the King of Kings and was a guide for the wise men to follow that they may find Him, and worship Him.
  • Angels remind us of the Heavenly Host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on the earth peace, goodwill toward men.” (Luke 2)

(In the Bible, Angels appear as men.  They are not portrayed as beautiful women in slinky or fancy dresses with wings and a halo. They are messengers of God.  They came to announce His birth and to Worship Him! We are to worship Him and not the angels.)

  • Ice-cycles hung on the tree reflect the light – just as we are to let The Light of the world reflect through us. When I was a child, the Ice-cycles were silver tinsel cut into long strands. Granddaddy always insisted on hanging them on the tree one by one so that they would hang perfectly. (I must admit to giving into the urge to take a hand full and fling them on the tree and allowed them to fall where they may. They often landed on the floor!) Today I use crystal or clear plastic. When the light shines on the crystal ones, we can almost see a rainbow reflected on the wall!
  • The tree skirt reminds me that He has clothed me with HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS.
  • The gifts under the tree remind me of the greatest gift of all. Salvation wrapped in love. The perfect gift from God – His only begotten Son; the lamb of God who was born to die for us. Our virgin-born Savior, wrapped in swaddling clothes was the best gift ever given!

When doing the Christmas Tree Gospel presentation, sometimes I gave each child a card with a verse to read as we came to the appropriate moment/decoration. Of course, each was given the gift of a candy cane to take as a reminder of God’s wonderful gift to us.

Please excuse the family pictures as I haven’t decorated our tree yet this year and didn’t have a suitable photo of a Christmas tree to use.   I would love to hear how you share the Gospel at Christmas. Please feel free to give us your stories in the comment section. Have a blessed Christmas season this year!

Love,

Kathy

A Packrat’s Attempt at Organizing Christmas Decorations

Christmas Ornaments 2012 003 Christmas Ornaments 2012 005 Christmas Ornaments 2012 009 Christmas Ornaments 2012 010 Christmas Ornaments 2012 012 Christmas Ornaments 2012 013 Christmas Ornaments 2012 014 Christmas Ornaments 2012 016 Christmas Ornaments 2012 018 Christmas Ornaments 2012 019 Christmas Ornaments 2012 020 Christmas Ornaments 2012 024 Christmas Ornaments 2012 025 Christmas Ornaments 2012 026 Christmas Ornaments 2012 028 Christmas Ornaments 2012 031 Christmas Ornaments 2012 Courier & Ives gift from Elonna McKibben Christmas Ornaments 2012 From The Patteson Kids many years ago! Christmas Ornaments 2012 Inherited from John's parents. It hung on their tree for many years. Christmas Ornaments 2012 Ornament we bought in honor of our first house.

These are only a few of our Christmas ornaments. I have been collecting them since 1979 and can’t bear to throw away any ornament or decoration given to me. I don’t even want to think about the years of greeting cards tied up in bows and stored in a box. Of course, I can look through them and see messages from loved ones who are now with the Lord. There’s just something special about seeing the handwriting of someone who is now with The Lord!

I have given away only one collectable ornament that my little cousin (more like a niece since her Mom is only four years older than me and we have always been close. That goes for all of my younger cousins.)

In 1984, little Emily gave me a beautiful clear, teardrop ornament with a candle embossed on it. Actually, she picked out this ornament for our Aunt Shirley – “Sissy.”  Sissy didn’t get to enjoy her gift, however. She lost her battle with breast cancer and spent that Christmas in Heaven.

Emily told her Mom that she wanted Aunt Kathy to have the gift she had so lovingly chosen for Sissy. I still have tears whenever I think about it. Each year as I placed that beautiful ornament on the tree, I was reminded of the love behind it. Now that Emily has children of her own, I thought it only fitting to return it to her so that her boys would know what a sweet, thoughtful Mother they have. Also to remember “Sissy.” Funny, isn’t it how one little item can bring back so many memories!

Somehow, I have the feeling that every time Mary walked into a stable or heard the sound of bleating sheep she was reminded of the wonderful night she held the Son of God in her arms – indeed, God himself who took the form of man to redeem us. Immanuel – “God with us.” The Bible says that “Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:19 

Organize!

Organize!

For nearly twenty years, I stored all of our Christmas decorations in the original boxes in my college footlocker which I kept in our den closet with the artificial tree. However, I ran out of space and the boxes began to smell musty and had to be thrown away along with the footlocker. I had to find someway to organize all of my “Christmas stuff!” The answer to my dilemma came to me at Staples. We were buying plastic file drawers for our home office and also for my sewing room. Inspiration hit like a bolt of lightning. The files were perfect! I still have a few boxes for more delicate ornaments but I can just roll the file out to the tree and return it to the closet when I’m done and I know where everything is. Everything else will go into a plastic tub which will sit on top of the file. I love organization. Don’t you?

If you have a story about special ornaments or organizational tips, I would love to read about it!

Praying my readers will have a new year of joy and blessing!

Love,

Kathy