My Christmas tree has always been the most important decoration of the season for me. I have always been picky about how my tree looked, the shape of it, how the lights were, how many lights there were (had to be LOTS of lights), and how each ornament was placed. I wanted the perfect tree!
Well, I learned a valuable lesson this year. There is no such thing as a perfect tree!! There is the tree that you can accept because it looks “good enough”, and then there is the tree that you are very pleased with, ALMOST perfect! I finally have that tree up!!
After fighting with my 9 foot tall pre-lit (HA!) tree which I have had for about three years, I finally got all the lights removed from it since well over half were not working!! This process took me about a week and half!! BIG TREE!!! LOL I then proceeded to put the tree up, fighting with breaking branches, and restringing working lights as I went. When I got to the point of having ‘only’ 7 sections left to put back in place and put lights on, I made the executive decision to convert my 9 ft. tree to a 7 footer!! This was saving me from having to fight with another 4 sections of branches and restringing lights on them! So my wonderful hubby helped me remove that section. That’s one of the wonderful things about having a fake tree, at least a slender one. You can remove an entire section and not even notice!!
Well, once this section was removed, I still had 4 more sections to string lights back on, the very bottom branches. After finishing a section and about a half of another, I look up and the very top of my tree has no lights!! I had been leaving the lights on as I go because I like to see where the empty spots are as I go! When I looked up there and saw the entire top of my tree, which previously was well lit, now dark, I have to admit, I lost it!!
I was so upset! I seriously considered just taking the entire tree down and not even putting one up this year! You would have to know me to know how devastating that thought was to me. I have NEVER not put a tree up at Christmas. In fact, I am usually one of the people putting it up the weekend after Thanksgiving! My tree has always been a very important part of my Christmas décor, and it just never seems like Christmas until the tree is up and has at least one or two wrapped gifts under it!! That’s just me. I was so upset about this tree not cooperating with me, I spent a couple of hours in tears!
Once I was able to collect myself and think somewhat (or so I thought) rationally, I proceeded to take the offending tree down! I decided I would either go and buy a real tree and put it up the next day, or if all else failed, I would purchase a small 4 footer and put it up. I was just so crushed!!
I pulled out the trusty computer once I had the tree down and sufficiently bagged up, and went to Walmart.com to see what they had to offer in fake trees. I found a gorgeous white tree with clear lights. So, I decided that I was going to go the next morning and buy that tree and some colored lights to add to it and that would be my tree. It was really pretty in the picture and it was a 6.5 footer!! Perfect!
Well, when I got to Wally world the next morning, I found my tree, got the lights to add to it and a couple other things and headed back home to make my tree perfect!! Only problem was, when I got home and hubby was helping me to set up the tree, we discovered it did not have clear lights on it, rather multi-colored!! I had purchased multi-colored lights to add to it. I wanted the clear mixed with the multi’s. I just said, “you know what, I don’t care. It’s just going to have colored lights only on it!” Of course, the hubby didn’t argue!!
Once we got it up, and the extra lights put on it, it looked amazing!! Even without ornaments of any kind on it! The extra lights I purchased were icicle lights. I thought they would look pretty cool hanging on the tree and actually look like there were lots more lights than there actually was! I was right. Those icicle lights were just the thing! I love lots of lights!! I know, I already said that.
By this time, we were both exhausted, and I was pretty sore from chasing a not quite yet potty trained puppy (hubby’s) and slipping and falling!! So, we called it a night. I decided I would finish it the following day.
So, the next morning, I go to the shed and dig out my ornaments and begin decorating my tree. I say it took me all day to decorate it, but actually, since I didn’t get out of bed until almost 11 that morning and was done by 5 PM, I didn’t think I had done all that bad! (I had stayed up too late staring at my pretty tree the night before!)
Once I had this tree decorated and sat back to actually look at it, I felt such a sense of peace. As I looked at all the ornaments, the crosses and angels, nativity ornaments, and of course all the ornaments for the grandbabies, I felt so peaceful. But then, I always do feel a special sense of peace when I stare at a beautiful Christmas tree! And I loved my new tree!!
So, even though I thought I was about to go off the deep end because of a silly tree, I survived. By the grace of God, I didn’t just throw the offending tree out in the yard and scream “forget it!!” I cried and prayed, and then it was time to move on to a different plan.
Thank you Lord for being with me throughout the entire Christmas tree adventure! Thank you for helping me to maintain a little bit of calm when I was ready to totally give up. Thank you Father, for helping me to see that Christmas is not about a tree or decorations, but about sharing YOUR love with others. You, God, gave all mankind the ultimate gift on that Christmas night so long ago. I don’t know if there were trees around that manger, but can you picture everyone trying to build a manger in their living rooms every Christmas season? I thank you for all the wonderful gifts you give me each and every day. Lord, I praise you for the ability to purchase gifts for all of my grandchildren and children this year. I especially thank you Father, for giving me a better perspective of what this special season of the year is all about and I pray that you help me to take the spirit of Christmas with me throughout the rest of my days on this earth. You have given me so many opportunities this past year and so many lessons, some of which I did not want to receive, but I see why you gave me those lessons now. Father, I beg your forgiveness for the many times I have said or done something that was disappointing or hurtful to you. Father, the last thing I want to do is hurt you. I pray that, with your help, I can be a bright light sharing the love of Jesus with anyone I come into contact with the rest of my days. Thank you Father for loving me, even when I am at my worst, and helping me to see the way to turn myself from being at my worst to getting closer to being at my best. I know I still have a long way to go, but with Your help Father, I know there is nothing I cannot do! I thank you for that promise. Father, I ask your blessings on those I have spoken to either in person, or online who are hurting and need your loving arms wrapped around them. I pray Lord that my children all freely seek and accept those loving arms you want to wrap around them. Thank you for loving me Father. I love you Lord! In Jesus’ precious name I pray these things. Amen