Charlyne Cares for Kids

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This Week's Charlyne Cares For Kids Devotional

Friday, December 19, 2014

Thank you for your financial support of Rejoice Marriage Ministries throughout the year. We are especially grateful for contributions received during December for us to be able to reach more people next year. We are blessed and humbled that the Lord has chosen us to encourage and teach God’s Word every day to hurting men and women who are in a marriage crisis.
 
We would like you to prayerfully consider giving to our ministry as we are fast approaching the end of 2014. God can take your gift and multiply it for His glory. Have you been helped? Will you consider supporting us in helping more hurting marriages next year? Thank you! – Charlyne
 
Your gift must be postmarked by December 31, 2014 to be credited in calendar year 2014 for tax purposes.

CLICK HERE FOR CONTRIBUTION OPTIONS

O Christmas Tree
 
For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders.  And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  Isaiah 9:6 (NLT)
 
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Thy leaves are so unchanging;
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Thy leaves are so unchanging;
Not only green when summer’s here,
But also when ’tis cold and drear.
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Thy leaves are so unchanging!
 
The little Christmas tree looked around anxiously as one by one the lights were dimmed at the tree lot and the families departed with their choices secured firmly atop their cars.  Another night had passed and he had not been chosen.  Who could blame them?  With his broken branches and his gaps where parts were missing, with his holes where green should be and his drooping needles, he was a sorry sight indeed.  A single tear slipped down his trunk as he closed his eyes against the snow and cold.  “There’s always tomorrow,” he thought to himself.
 
Across town a little boy gazed out the window of his apartment as the snow fell gently to the ground.  It was Christmastime and he should be waiting joyfully to celebrate with his family.  Instead he was watching out the window on a cold, snowy night, waiting for his mother to come home from work.  Christmas hadn’t always been like this and he fondly recalled those Christmases with the beautiful tree and his parents reading him the story of the Christ child.  Now there was no family, no presents and no tree.  Mom had told him there just wouldn’t be the money this year for things like that.  “I can live without the presents,” he thought to himself, “but I wish we could at least have a tree.”  A single tear slipped down his face as he closed his eyes against the snow and cold.  “There’s always tomorrow,” he thought to himself. 

 
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Much pleasure thou can’st give me;
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Much pleasure thou can’st give me;
How often has the Christmas tree
Afforded me the greatest glee!
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Much pleasure thou can’st give me.
 
Christmas Eve day dawned bright and beautiful as the rising sun sent frosty glimmers across the newly fallen snow.  The little Christmas tree awoke with hope.  Surely today would be the day he was chosen.  After all, most of the other trees had already gone to warm homes and the lot was nearly bare.  Carloads of families were on their way and he knew, he just knew, that this was going to be his lucky day.  He knew that there was someone on the way who would love him just like he was; someone who would look beyond the gaping holes and the bent and broken branches to see the beautiful heart inside. 
 
Across town, the little boy was waking to the delightful sight of the sun dancing off the mounds of snow.  He, too, awoke with hope.  The snow meant an opportunity to shovel and the shoveling meant an opportunity to earn some money.  Money he hoped to use to buy a Christmas tree.  With shovel in hand he trudged from door to door, offering to clear walkways and driveways and paths for the little dogs to run in.  He found lots of work and, after a morning of shoveling, had accumulated what he thought was enough money for a tree.  He talked his mom into driving across town to the only tree lot that had any trees left in it.  He knew, he just knew, that his tree would be there.

 
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Thy candles shine so brightly!
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Thy candles shine so brightly!
From base to summit, gay and bright,
There’s only splendor for the sight.
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas
Tree!
Thy candles shine so brightly!
 
The little Christmas tree stood as proudly as he could as the families came to make their choices.  He fluffed his broken branches and tried his best to cover the gaping holes.  He put on his best smile and prayed that someone would see his heart.  But as the other trees started to disappear one by one, his heart grew sad.  Could no one look beyond the outside to see the beauty inside?  Was there anyone who could love him just the way he was?  A single tear slipped down his trunk.
 
The little boy eagerly piled out of the car and began to search among the rows for his perfect tree.  Up and down he went, knowing his tree was in there somewhere.  But this one was too big and that one was too round and the one over there had too many branches.  As he rounded the corner he came face to face with the little tree.  He didn’t see the gaping holes or the broken places.  He didn’t see the pile of needles that sat at the base.  He didn’t see the bent branches and the scrawny shape.  The little boy saw the tree’s heart and a single tear slipped down his cheek.  To him, this was the most beautiful Christmas tree he had ever seen.

 
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
How richly God has decked thee!
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
How richly God has decked thee!
Thou bidst us true and faithful be,
And trust in God unchangingly.
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
How richly God has decked thee!
 
That night the little Christmas tree stood proudly beside the little boy’s fireplace.  He had been strewn with popcorn chains and little white lights.  Beneath him was a crèche with Mary and Joseph and the baby Jesus.  Across the room, the little boy snuggled in his mother’s arms as she read him the Christmas story.  As the little Christmas tree listened to the story of how Jesus came to earth to offer hope to mankind, he knew that he was part of one of the greatest gifts of all.  The little boy and the little tree shared a knowing glance as they both recognized that someone had seen their hearts.
 

“The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”  1 Samuel 16:7b

God bless, 

Kim, a stander in Nebraska

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Pompano Beach, FL 33061

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