What is the Sequoia project?

My photo
Wausau, Wisconsin, United States
The Sequoia tree is one of the largest in the world. The seed is the size of a grain of wheat. One kind act will often seem unimportant but has ripple effects across humanity.

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Christmas Tree.

It’s Christmas time and gifts are soon to be exchanged across the world. What is this day for? Is it to prove to others how much we care by the amount of money spent on their gifts? Television tells me that if I love my wife I need to go down and buy a diamond.

Christmas is the celebration of a man named Jesus birthday. I’m not sure where gift exchanging started in history, but its probably related to the three gifts that were presented to this child. The “giving” of gifts, for us, we have tried not to commercialize. We weren’t always this way though. We use to stress over the added costs, during the hardest winter months of the year. We’ve never known financial security. Who really has? Maybe a small percent of Americans but not the majority. You live with what you have and keep your eye on the things important. We have never not had a meal when it was needed, or spent the night in the rain. Millions have though, and will tonight.

What is special to us, during this special time, is a Christmas tree. That’s really it. Nothing fancy and often “Charlie Brown” trees. The decorating of this tree is what makes it special. The handmade ornaments that our friends and family have made, the songs in the background. The smell of bread and cookies fill the house. Its not about what’s under the tree but the spirit that it’s put up with. The tree itself always manages to fall over once or twice each year as well. Last night it came crashing down with then the sound of two cats taking off into hiding.

This year we wanted to help bring this spirit to another family. We always go to the same family that sells then just a few blocks from our home. Jeff is always there, looking cold, but always with a bright smile and handshake. This year we took a Christmas card to him, with money in it, to cover the cost of a tree for a stranger he felt might need it. A simple act that can maybe mean the difference in someone’s life this holiday season. Maybe they will have their children helping them set it up. This child will remember the fun and will make it a point to do it with theirs 20 years later. Just because of that one special year in their memory of past Christmases. Who really knows. All of these projects could mean nothing and be a waste of time.

Really? Not a chance. Each act of giving to another does change lives. Christmas may be a little different to the family where this tree will call home for a week. There is just something about a Christmas tree. Strive to give, with no expectations in what comes back all year round. It will change your life. Your eyes and heart will open to things you never imagined.