I recently read the story of Chad Rose, a Michigan resident who one year happened to have an extra Christmas tree that was used on his business’s parade float. Not needing the tree, yet not wanting it to go unused, he posted on Craigslist to give it away for free. For most of us a tree is an essential and integral part of the Christmas season. Yet there are people for whom a tree is an expense that would require using funds needed for daily essentials. After posting the ad, his inbox was immediately flooded with touching stories of why various families deserved to have the tree.

With each e-mail he read, it became clear how significant one small evergreen tree can be in providing the special holiday glow for a family. One email read, “Having a real Christmas tree would be such a great blessing this year [because] usually we draw a Christmas tree on a large poster and hang it in the corner.” Realizing that even $25 towards a tree was too much for some families to spare, Chad went out and bought 40 more trees to give away. He spent most of the next day going over his recently received emails for the first tree. It is said he was checking it twice, and not paying much attention to who’s been naughty or nice – just deserving.

The good holiday spirit in this story doesn’t stop with Chad Rose. Ann Posont of East Grand Rapids read Rose’s Ad and contacted him, not to get, but to give. She offered to donate ornaments and other trimming for the 40 trees he had purchased.

It has been said that the Christmas season tends to bring out the good in people. What if, like Chad Rose we can all look for even small ways to give, such as a lone, left-over Christmas tree. Perhaps like Rose’s case, God would then impress on us to give out of our abundance to bring the true joy of Christmas to others, strangers in our midst. You never know who will be touched and how far and wide your generosity might extend as you share and other people like Ann Posont catch the spirit (The Holy Spirit) and share the love of God as well.

Like Roses’ Christmas tree, what is in your possession? The Spirit of giving grows, first in us, then in others we touch.

Story adapted from Camille Styles: “8 inspiring stories that show true meaning of Christmas”

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