I began to reflect on the year gone by and was searching through my pictures to find the perfect one to tell my story and I found my Christmas tree. It isn't big, full or even real. But on its branches hang symbols of days gone by. If you look closely you will see one I made by hand. That was Christmas when money was so tight that we had no gifts between me and my love one. So I went to the dollar store and bought a roll of wrapping paper and some plastic doilies and took some tape from work and some paper clips and I made some ornaments. We didn't have a tree that year, I just hung them on the wall in the shape of a tree. There hangs the first ornament I bought for my little girl. Her eyes had not seen the world yet but I already loved her. I could feel her move around in my tummy and I know she was mine and I knew she was loved. There hangs one of the first ornaments she made for me, a big white angel with gold trimmed wings. There hangs a wreath ornament made of Chili peppers, the one me and my beloved bought the first time we met in person. There hangs an ornament given to me by a sweet young boy. A thank you gift he made for me. We had adopted his family one year for Christmas and their wish list consisted of things I could not afford. But by the grace of God, through others, they received their stove, beds, food, clothes and even toys...they hadn't asked for toys, they only asked for things they needed. At 10 years old he could tell you how many cans of vegetable he had in their pantry and corn bread mix. They made one of each a day, to share between him, his sister and his mother. I still cry when I think about them. There hangs the lyrics to Away in a manger, the song that tells of my saviour and how he was born so fragile yet he is the King of Kings. Even my tree itself has a story. It is the tree me and my precious daughter bought on our first Christmas alone. It wasn't big and it wasn't real but it was ours. My tree and its ornaments are symbolic of all of God's blessing. Through the good times and hard times, He was there. He loved me and cared for me when I knew nothing of Him. He worked through others to help me and as He filled me, he used me to help others. How great is our God!!