John 15:1 – I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. (NIV)
"It's time to haul out the old toilet brush and decorate it for Christmas."
"Hey kids, help us stuff this old toilet brush back into the box!"
Wouldn't those comments raise an eyelid or two? The truth is that an American company, Addis Brush, created the very first artificial brush Christmas trees on their toilet brush machinery.
An artificial tree certainly has its place in today's world. Time, space, mess — all these helped us choose our look-alike rather than a fresh one. It is "easily" trampled into a box and stored for the year. Then we search it out, and find it scrunched, misshapen, and worn. With some shoving, pinching, and pulling, lots of lights, tinsel, and ornaments, it again looks (almost) like new. We sigh with relief — and then a few days later, we strip it down and force it fiercely into its container for next time.
Crowds of us treat Jesus the same way. We haul Him out for the "big season", and then when He has suitably impressed our friends, business acquaintances, and all the Santa requirements, we stuff Him back in a box. We choose the false over the fresh. That might be fine when it comes to Christmas trees — but do we really want to treat the Son of God that way?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, come into our hearts in a fresh, new way this year. Amen.