Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Our Tree

Peace...a word found on thousands of holiday cards this season, yet so far out of reach for many. As I look at our tree this year I reflect on the past year and thank Jesus that He redeems our lost and weary hearts as we yield ALL to him.

A year ago I lived in a house twice as big on two and a half acres with a couple hundred trees and two creeks, my dream home. Our nine foot tree sat prominently in front of the fireplace. Problem was it wasn't a dream and there was no peace.

So this past year has been a year of change. We have sold, given away, and thrown away many of our things; we sold the "dream" house; we gave up titles and busyness at church; we gave up some friends and what's left…simplicity. Sometimes I think we get caught up in the things and stuff of life, and then we miss it.

A couple of years ago I sat with a friend in a Panera Bread Co having breakfast. Our table sat between two groups of women. On our right were some grandma types who were sharing pictures of their kids and grandkids, telling stories of days gone by. On our left were some soccer mom types with their PDAs syncing their schedules and trying to get through their week. It was surreal watching these contrasting life stages side by side. I'll bet you if the grandma types could tell the soccer mom types just one thing it would be to slow down and hold your family close before they slip away to old memory filled photos.

One of the best memories of my youth was fishing with my Dad. We would fish nearly every week through the summer and after we loaded up to go home we would stand and make cold cut sandwiches on the hood of his truck, watching the brilliant red and orange glow of the sunset as it disappeared below the horizon. I'm sure there were a thousand things he could have been doing other than fishing, but I'm glad he didn't. I will never forget those summer nights.

So back to peace, we found it. It was lost, but we found it. This year our tree is smaller, so is our house, yard and just about everything else, but we are happy and I wouldn't trade trees for anything.



Ginger said...

A rare gift- to receive wisdom in your youth. You guys are a great example to us, we're so thankful for you!

Shipra Panosian said...

pearls of wisdom right here.
Merry Christmas, Carels!

Anonymous said...

You most definitely found a great treasure....
Peace! Your comments give great credence to the scripture that tells us not to lay up our treasures on this earth! I'm proud of you, your commitment first of all to the Lord, then the Godly home you are establishing. Don't loose what you've found! Aunt Evelyn