Monday, December 10, 2018

Devotionals for the Heart: The Reason for the Christmas season

A Beautiful Tree
A devotional by Tammy Karasek

"But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord." ~Luke 2:10-11 (NIV)

I’m sure we all have a memory or two that is special to us around Christmas. I’d like to share with you a particular memory that taught ME a lesson about Christmas from a three-year-old!

I must confess that I’m a recovering perfectionist. I say recovering because until the Christmas of 1989, I really had a problem with being an extreme perfectionist.

It was the beginning of December and I was sick on the couch. Our three-year-old daughter was very excited for the holiday and it was fun to watch. This year was the year she was more aware of what was going on with all of the festivities of the holiday.

My husband had put up the tree for us and we were going to be decorating but . . . I just didn’t have any energy. Each day our daughter would say, “Mommy, is dis da day? Mommy, do we decorate today?”

I’d say, “Maybe later.”

So finally, about the 4th day she informed me that she was going to decorate. Yes, three years old and sassy through and through!

Without the energy to really argue I thought she would probably put on one or two ornaments and we’d be done with it.

Well, she pulled the lid off (I still don’t know how she got it off, it’s a pretty tight lid on those containers). And one by one she pulled out the ornaments. She would say, “I be berry careful, Mommy! I be berry careful wif da ormanents.”

Sure enough, she would gingerly walk to the tree and carefully place the ornaments on the tree. I was impressed for sure.

This went on for 45 minutes or so, as she kept going at it. At one point, I glanced over at the tree and noticed that all the ornaments were about 18 inches up from the bottom branches on the tree and the other three or four feet up the tree was empty.

The perfectionist in me immediately thought, “Oh I’m going to have so much extra work to do. I’m going to have to move all of them because they are all kind of clustered right there in the front.”

As I was thinking about all of this in my mind I heard a gasp from the container. She looked like she was about to fall in but that’s not the reason she gasped.

All of a sudden she said, “I found it Mommy! I found it! And I will be berry berry careful.”

She got out and she cradled an ornament in her hand. She walked very slowly to the couch and as she got close to the couch she bent her little knees down and presented this ornament to me and, “I got the most important ormanent, Mommy! It’s dis one. Dis is why we have a Kismas twee. It’s all about da baby Jesus. Dis is da one, Mommy.”

And like now as I’m typing this, I teared up and said, “You know, little girl. You understand it. You are right. That is the most important ornament and you are right, that is why we have a Christmas tree. It is all about baby Jesus.”

And at that moment I looked at the tree and realized it was the most beautiful tree I’d ever seen. All 18 inches of those ornaments.

And so as we prepare for Christmas this year, wherever someone puts that particular ornament on our tree, that’s perfect to me because it’s their joy and they know why they are putting it on that tree in our family.

I pray that you also have a Christ filled Christmas in your home and that your family, whoever that may be that gathers with you, know why you are decorating that tree and Who we have that Christmas tree for. It is all about Baby Jesus.

By the way, a little P.S. to the story… When my husband came home later that day, he walked into the room and looked at the tree. Then looked at me and looked back at the tree.

I put my finger to my mouth and said, “Someone special wanted to decorate the tree today and I think it looks beautiful, don’t you?”

My daughter looked at him and said, “I decorated it today, Daddy! Because dis tree is all about da Baby Jesus and dis Kismas Tree is pitty. Very pitty.”

And to this day this ornament stays front and center of our Christmas tree because it really is all about the Baby Jesus.

Merry Christmas.

Author Bio:
You’ll find Tammy seeing humor and causing laughter in every aspect of life.

Her past, filled with bullying and criticism from family, is the driving force of her passion to always encourage others and give them The Reason to smile.

She’s been married to her college sweetheart, Larry, for 37 years, a mom to their grown daughter, Kristen and wrapped around the paw of a little dog named Hattie. Born and raised in Ohio, her family now resides in South Carolina.

She is the President of Word Weavers Upstate SC, member of ACFW and member of My Book Therapy/Novel Academy.

She’s the Blog Coordinator/Editor for Florida Christian Writers Conference, a contributor in the 2018 Divine Moments Compilation Book—Cool-inary Moments, a monthly contributor for and God is Love (

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1 comment:

  1. What a lovely story and a great reminder about the important things!


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