From One Broken Tree to Another

In these final hours before Christmas day, an urging in my spirit beckons me back to the ancient texts that tell the story of how love came down on that first Christmas in Bethlehem.  And who better to recite that text to us today than Linus.  Take it away, my blue-blanket-lovin’-buddy:

I love that after hearing Linus’ speech, Charlie Brown’s tree isn’t so broken anymore.  He can see past its failings to see its true potential.  Its beauty despite the thinning needles.

Kind of like how God sees us.

We’re so messed up, we really are.  You need only turn on the news for five seconds to see that validated.  Or hop inside my head when someone cuts me off in traffic.

But thank goodness that’s not the end of our story.  Thank goodness the plot thickened when God sent his precious son to earth as a baby, to put on our sorry flesh and walk among us…laugh beside us…cry with us…and ultimately pay the price for us through death on a cross.  To save us from the messed up sin that rattles within us all.

I was reading from Ann Voskamp’s blog last week and got knocked over by these words of truth she shared:

…If there is no cross in my Christmas, then my Christmas has lost Christ, and what is the manger if it not for the Messiah, the one who saves us with the scars?

This Babe who lays in a wooden manger, who came to lie on a wooden Cross, He is healing all wounds…

This Christmas, may we quiet the maddening roar to hear the good word of the angels afresh:

Fear not!  For behold I give you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a savior, which is Christ the Lord.

Christ the Lord.  The one to rescue us.  The one to offer a healing balm for our oozing wounds.  The one to transform a dejected and damaged Christmas tree into a redeemed thing of glory.

Merry Christmas, dear reader.  From one broken tree to another.

P.S. Here’s last year’s Christmas Eve post…with the nativity story as told by kids.  Kids from New Zealand.  So, prepare for cute-kids-with-accents overload.


Lovely comments so far...

  1. Kirsten says

    Lauren you are a beautiful person, inside and out. I have tears in my eyes after reading this post. Thank God for His Son, for that humble manger and the quiet entrance He made into this world that holds such significant meaning. Thank God for broken trees, and dear friends, too. Thank God for you sweet friend. Love you! Merry Christmas!

  2. Marmie says

    So true, Lauren!

    Would you believe, Pastor Tom talked about this very excerpt from Charlie Brown tonight in during our candlelight service? Great minds!! And when Linus says, “Lights, please”…that had new meaning, since our church was without electricity until ten minutes into the service.

    Thanks for posting true tidings of great joy! Happy Christmas, from another broken tree!

  3. says

    TRUTH! I needed to read this tonight to help refocus my day a little bit. It is all about that Messiah in a manger, a humble beginning to the greatest gift this messy earth has ever seen! Merry Christmas, friend!

  4. says

    Lauren! This is one of my favorite posts of yours (though there are many ever growing in that category). I know Mom mentioned it, but its uncanny how Pastor Tom spoke of this exact Linus moment during his sermon, the same night you posted this! When our lights were out in the beginning of the service, Jesus really being “the light of the world” hit home. Your words had me tearing up, especially “from one broken tree to another.” Oh we’re so broken, aren’t we? With Paul, we can say honestly say we’re the chief of sinners. But as you said so beautifully, that’s not the end of the story. I love that God himself became the broken damaged tree, so we could be a beautiful aluminum one! The gospel still leaves me with a sense of wonder and incredulity. It’s so backwards and upside-down! Such divine paradox.
    Your post made me think of this poem/carol, which I’d like to share:

    “Today you see in a stable
    the Word speechless,
    Greatness in smallness,
    Immensity in blankets.
    Such wonders!…

    He who had no beginning,
    his being of Time begins;
    the Creator, as a creature,
    is now subject to our griefs.
    Such wonders!”
    -Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, “Carol 3,” Mexican, 17th Century

    • Marmie says

      Your thoughts and that poem brought me to tears, Lisbeth! So glad we were together for that special “Lights, please” moment at the candlelight service.

  5. says

    Beautiful, Lauren. Linus never fails to bring a tear to my eye with his narration. Whether one is a Christian or any other “ian”, your words, as do Linus’, have meaning to the heart. I could say more, but you know. ::hugs:: Merry Christmas to you and yours, dear!

  6. says

    Even though we watched Charlie Brown Christmas at home, I had to watch Linus give his oration of those timeless words one more time on your blog. Broken trees we surely are. Just as Charlie Brown’s friends did when they took Snoopy’s award-winning lights and decorations off his doghouse and put them on Charlie’s tree, God makes our dark and tarnished lives bright and shiny anew. Thanks for the well-crafted reminder. And Lisbeth’s poem is amazing!

    • thethinkingcloset says

      Linus’s speech never gets old, does it? I have a feeling it’s because the message is the hope of our hearts! And I love how the metaphor carries through to the lights and decor…you’re so right! God shines light and life into our darkened world. Glory be to God!

  7. says

    You know, you have a way with words that is really amazing and beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing with us a personal and tangible story. This is such a wonderful reminder at Christmas and every day that we are all broken trees, made anew by God’s greatest gift to us. Lots of love to you, from yet another broken tree.

    • thethinkingcloset says

      Speaking of having a way with words…girl, your comment cut straight to the core! It’s true–we need to remember every day that we are broken and in need of a Savior–and we also can rejoice in knowing that our Savior did come to earth to rescue us…and anticipate that he WILL come again! (Btw I’m banking on Canadians and Americans being next door neighbors in heaven.)

  8. says

    Lauren, what a beautiful post and reminder. My Christmas had me reflecting on what is truly important…..we all need reminding to stay grounded! Bless you!

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