The Story of the Christmas Tree, Act 1

It’s difficult to imagine Christmas without decorated trees. But do they have any “redeeming” value for Christians? And how did the idea get started in the first place? I think the answer to the first question is a resounding YES! The answer to the second question is a bit longer. Believe it or not, the Christmas tree as we know it today actually took more than 700 years to make! For our family, the “evolution” of the Christmas tree makes the most sense when we think of it as happening in three main acts. I’ve written Act 1 in the form of a rhyme to make it easy for little ones to enjoy:

The Little Fir Tree

© 2012 by Eric Wilbanks, All Rights Reserved.*

There once was a giant oak
That ruled the western lands
It was said the oak was planted
By Thor’s mighty hand
The people there all worshipped
Beneath the ancient tree
Until a monk named Boniface
Refused to bow his knee
This man of faith told of a God
Who hears us when we pray
But the people there all feared Thor’s wrath
And turned their ears away
So Boniface removed his robe
As the people gathered round
And taking up a woodsman’s axe
He chopped the great oak down
The hours turned to days
Yet Thor’s wrath never came
And one by one the people believed
In the power of Jesus’ name
The monk built a house of worship
From the wood of that great oak
And from that point on the people there
Listened when Boniface spoke
Now, it’s here our story really begins
This part you may have heard
Because Boniface was quite well-known
For his ability to explain God’s Word
As time went by something happened
Within the stump of that oak tree
A little fir sprang up—it’s true!
And its leaves were evergreen
The people marveled at this sight
And they wondered at its meaning
So Boniface used this miracle
To explain three special things
First he set the record straight
Twasn’t Thor who made those trees
Instead, ‘twas the God of the Bible
Whose Hand made all we see
Next he taught them what it means
That our God is always the same
Like the leaves on the evergreen tree
God is eternal and will never change
Finally he used the shape of the tree
To show our God is three yet one
Like the triangle of the little fir
He is Father, Spirit, and Son.
So, Boniface taught three things using the little fir tree as an object lesson. First, God is our creator—He made all trees. Second, God is eternal—He never changes. Third, God is three in one—Father, Spirit, and Son!

So, now we know why the little fir tree became important to Christians. But that still doesn’t explain how the fir tree became the Christmas tree, does it? To learn that, we’ll need to look at Act 2.

*If you are interested in sharing this poem, I’d be honored to have you do so. All I ask is that you attribute the poem to me with a link back to this website and blog post. Thanks!

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About Eric Wilbanks

Brand strategist. Wordsmith. Change architect. Training specialist. DiSC Certified. Family guy (hot wife and 4 cool kids). Love my Bible, guitars, baseball, and MMA.


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