Okay...confession time. This year we spent Christmas in our new place, here in Nashville. We actually have more room in our apartment now than we had in our house in J.C. So, we put up our tree and it sat in a corner and was beautiful. We did not have to squeeze by it or move any furniture. It was great. We could enjoy it and the spacious living room all at the same time. So, there it stood in all of its regal sparkly splendor. Christmas came and Christmas went. January 5th, when our son's new girlfriend came over to a "meet the parents" dinner...yep you guessed it....she was met with the enormous, yet still beautiful, tree in the corner. Actually, at this point, I had kind of forgotten about it. Out of sight, out of mind...well kind of. Then, school started back and we were getting into the swing of things and the tree still stood. Now, by this point, it was losing some luster, but nevertheless, hung on and hung out right in that same corner. In the past, I have tackled the tree, taken off ornaments and wrangled the lights back into bags quickly right after Christmas. This time, though, we were well into the second week of January before I decided enough was enough. Taking down the tree is a lonely job and I always feel a little like the little red hen that is making bread and she can't get anyone to help, except at the end I don't have any nice warm bread that anyone wants to eat. I just have an old bare tree. In the past, I knew what to do with it when I was done. I would take it outside to the curb. This year, though, I had not a clue. So I wrestled it over close to the door (sort of in our pathway coming in and out) and I left it. I figured that it would not be forgotten there. Now, the reason I finally took it down was because I was getting ready to head back to J.C. to work for a week and I definitely did not want it hanging over my head when I got back. So, I packed up and left.
My husband, who did not know what to do with the tree either, had the task of finding that out. So, imagine my surprise when I come home a 5 days later and the tree is right where I left it. (He did tell me on the phone as I was driving back to Nashville though "Uh, just wanted to let you know that the tree is still here"....wise man) In the hubbie's defense, he did try to find out. Long story short, the place that would pick up a tree for you evidently no longer does it the 3rd week in January. Then, with work and no way to transport it, one of the obvious choices was to leave it. I got home on the weekend and the tree was going to have to be with us for a couple of more days. Life went on. When we went in or out the door, we kind of had to sidle around the tree. When, the kids played in the hallway, they had to do so....yep.... around the tree. It was not really like the a big pink elephant in the room, but it was a looming evergreen that we adapted our lives around, literally. At this point, Chiteng laid out some wisdom and said, " It is funny how there is this huge tree sitting in our living room and we walk by it all the time and have really learned to not see it." Well, it was an "aha" moment for me. You know the type, when hear that heavenly music in your head and ah ah ah, ah ah ah....okay..maybe that's just me. (kind of reminds me of the Little Mermaid music) Anyway, if you were wondering at any point if there was going to be a point, this is it. How may times do we put up with something in our lives that does not need to be there? We just learn to live with it and adapt our lives around it. Bad habits, addictions, poor decisions, mixed up priorities, wrong thinking....the list can go on and on.
We don't have to live with "it" though. We can go to our Father and ask him what we need toss out, what we need to change. "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." John 10:10. We have to stop the thief and have life more abundantly. So do whatever you need to do to that big evergreen sitting in the middle of your living room. Get out the ax, chop it up, drag it out, or take it to the dump, just get it gone!