Monday, November 26, 2012

Better than we expected and deserved

christmas trees 1
christmas trees 2
alex scouting 1
tree tag
tree stump
alex scouting 2
farmhouse and christmas trees
my dress
red t straps
cypress leaves
alex and helen scouting
A&H christmas tree scouting
our first christmas tree
As I mentioned earlier, we're all ajitter with excitement to establish some holiday traditions as a new family of two. This weekend past, we ventured out to a Christmas tree farm where I had lofty ideas of grandeur to chop down our very first Christmas tree. As we ambled about admiring the locally grown evergreen beauties at the charming family-owned farm, an amiable worker came alongside us to help determine the perfect tree for us. While we all scouted for a seven foot, slender cypress to fill our little home with holiday cheer, we discovered that he was an integral part of the farm since its conception, and that he himself was a Christian committed to a local church not too far from us. And he found out that we were celebrating our first Christmas as wedded folks, and that the husband was a seminary student and pastor at a local church not too far from him. As much as the husband and I were enamored with the lovely greenery for sale, we quickly ascertained that even the shortest, cheapest trees were at least twice as much as we had budgeted for a Christmas tree.

We attempted to escape as he was helping another patron so as not to disappoint him because we wouldn't be buying, but he caught us. When he learned the trees were more than twice out of our budget, he declared we select the tree we wanted anyhow, for he would charge only what we could afford. We gasped in disbelief.  "I mean it," he insisted. "Get whichever tree you want. I know seminary students don't have the biggest budget for these kinds of things." We stood in shock for a moment at his kindness and thanked him profusely. Fifteen minutes later, we picked out the tree, had it cut down, cleaned, and tied atop the car. Then we realized they accepted cash or check, and yet we had a card. "Don't worry about it," the kind worker said. "This is on me." Before we could object, he said, "Really, I insist. God would want us to receive things graciously given to us wholeheartedly, because he gives us all things wholeheartedly..." He continued on, but frankly, I became an emotional mess and cannot now recall what he said. We couldn't stop thanking him. "Thank you so much for blessing us," the Mister said. "Yes," I added tearfully. "God is so kind to us through you."

I couldn't help but cry all the way home, as I reflected on God's grace and mercy toward us through the worker's heartfelt kindness, when we are so undeserving. Now, every time I look at our lovely Christmas tree in the corner of our little living room, I am reminded of God's goodness to us, which is far better than we expected and deserved, first through the gospel, and now through the effects of the gospel lived out in his people's lives. We are blessed with a glorious beginning to the Christmas season.

31 comments:

  1. What a lovely story for picking out your first Christmas tree :) Hope you have fun decorating!

    Annie
    The Other Side of Gray

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  2. i have chills. this is such a beautiful story.. one that you will always remember around christmas time. :)

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  3. What? This is just amazing. God opens so many doors for us!

    And how sweet does this farm look? You guys make everything look like so much fun. I simply cannot wait to see how you two are going to decorate it, seeing as you have some extra cash now for decorations! ha

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  4. This is such a beautiful post. What a wonderful blessing.

    Also these photos were a little disorienting because I can't imagine cutting down a Christmas tree without ten feet of snow.

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  5. What an amazing and inspirational story!! Isn't it wonderful how many good people there are in the world? Reading this lifted my spirits so high! Thank you for sharing :)

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  6. That's such a beautiful story! what a great way to start your holidays as a married couple!

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  7. your sweet newlywed stories make me so happy :) my family and i always have a fake tree, but i always thought going to a tree farm and picking out your very own one must be such a fun festive time. and man oh man do the two of you take beautiful pictures. i looked through them twice, they're so pretty :)

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  8. It's amazing how kind people can be when you least expect it. What a beautiful gesture and a lovely start to your holiday season. Have fun establishing those holiday traditions together. You guys looked adorable on your tree shopping trip! I love your red t-straps.

    Rowena @ rolala loves

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  9. I totally teared up reading this! Such a beautiful story to go along with such magical pictures. I love hearing about kind strangers, makes me so happy! xo

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  10. I teared up too! What a kind man and beautiful story. Perfect for this season. (And your dress is really pretty as well :)

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  11. wow, God is so great!! what a wonderful gift from the guy at the tree farm, God provides even in the littlest of ways

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  12. you look so cute! what a blessing you got with that tree :)

    Chioma
    C's Evolution of Style

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  13. love the photos and your blog! Would you like to visit my blog? If you want, we can follow each-other with GoogleFriendConnect and I'm already following :) :) cheers!

    In a Blonde's Wardrobe

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  14. Such a beautiful story! I'm so glad things worked out so you could have a lovely tree. Congrats on your first Christmas together. It will be so special.

    P.S. Are you in a short sleeved dress picking out a Christmas tree?!! lol! I thought you were supposed to be in coats, scarves and hats. ;)

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    1. hahaha! erica, it was 80+ degrees this past weekend here! i wish i could have worn a coat, scarf, and hat :)

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  15. such an amazing story!
    God really is so wonderful to us. I love that you got to see it through this fun little outing.

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  16. what a beautiful Christmas miracle & blessing! wonderful start to your first Christmas :)

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  17. What a beautiful story. I bet he found such great joy in doing that for you guys! :)

    xo

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  18. Ahh, what a sweet story! I'm so glad you were able to get a tree - they are just gorgeous! Now you have a wonderful memory for your first Christmas together :)

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  19. Oh That is so sweet. I love this story. God bless that man!

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  20. oh gosh, darling story. getting a tree for christmas is always such a fun experience. i adore you red shoes!

    lindsey louise

    hellomrrabbit.blogspot.com

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  21. I definitely teared up reading that story. What an amazingly sweet testimony of the Lord's kindness to us, even in the smallest of things. He cares. Thank you for sharing that, it's so good for my heart to hear these things and be reminded.

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  22. Aww! This is the sweetest story. What an amazing experience- one that you will definitely always remember! That is definitely what Christmas is all about.

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  23. That is such a sweet story. What a nice man! Enjoy and treasure you new Christmas tree.

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  24. What a beautiful story and one that you will have throughout your married life even when you're out of the poor newlywed years.

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  25. What a lovely story! Thanks for sharing. x

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  26. This post is so beautiful, not because of the pictures but your words and your faith. Thank you for sharing ;)
    xo TJ

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  27. That is such a wonderful Christmas story! What a great reminder to be giving during this holiday season. Thank you for sharing it!

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  28. Love! I wish I had gone to a Christmas tree farm! Happy holidays!

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  29. I really really miss you, friend! This story was so amazing. Grace goes a long way and your story, the Christmas tree (and that kind man who gave it to you) are all beautiful!

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