I had forgotten how children decorate Christmas trees. At the center in Biel, I handed ornaments that had been without hangers (now with strings attached – my important contribution) to a pony-tailed 7 year-old girl. She was the size of a 7 year-old and lined up all of the bulbs at her level straight on the front of the tree. That is the part of the tree that she could see and reach. She did not noticed the part of the tree that faced the window to the street nor the top of the tree that was beyond her reach nor the sides. I hope that I never redistributed tree decorations after my little-ones had gone to bed. I probably did but not today. The first thing I noticed on the tree is that someone before us had placed some beaded/homemade decorations that were also in a straight line a little lower than the darling girl had placed red and gold small bulbs. They really stood out in size and remain in place. I don’t know how many of these children celebrate Christmas or have decorated a tree before. What I did that afternoon is hand an ornament to any child within reach and asked them to place it on the tree. Even the older boys complied. Not one rolled their eyes – a Christmas miracle. We completed our service at the center yesterday. Lot’s of memories were made as our group of 50+ spent a couple weeks in various kid activities. Some immigrant families might be newer to Biel and the grandparents are still in their homeland. We connected as best we could but for me the language is a challenge but children understand a smile and any encouraging words. I so miss my five grandchildren at this joyous time of year but I hope the grandma in me shined on anyone in need for this outreach.
We have classes again next week then off to another country for six more weeks of serving after Christmas and New Years. There are no “strings attached”, as with the Christmas ornaments, with giving time to others hoping to demonstrate that Jesus, this dear child in a manger, was a servant king. He served for three years then returned to His origin but in a changed form. Does one of the Triune God now have a body? Gen. 1:26, “Let us make man in Our image…”. No matter – we will know someday. Also, we live with what we can see. We may not see the top of the tree but God sees us. We may forget the window facing the street but God sees us. I remember how much time my children spent under the Christmas tree. They would rearrange wrapped gifts and build a fort. They would just lie down on their little backs and gaze up. Twinkling lights are magical but they are really there to remind us that Jesus is the Light of the world. We may not look up from under the tree but God sees us. I am not attaching photos of the center or the children because Switzerland, as does the USA, has privacy laws. Believe me – it was magical.