I minister to discarded Xmas Trees.
Yes, I have a few offbeat habits, but one of my favorites is my relationship to trees. Especially Christmas trees, after they’ve fulfilled their destiny of being adorned and celebrated at Christmas.
I have always had an affinity for trees — they have a certain energy and personality and they are very loving/patient toward humans. In that vein, I give gratitude back to trees-any trees. Hugs here and there (yes, on the street in broad daylight), a hello to one that I find beautiful and if a branch is hanging down, a high five is in order.
But my true love are Christmas trees. They are a rare breed, cut away from their roots and placed in water where they slowly perish within weeks. But not before they give the best performance of their lives, looking beautiful and spreading joy and light. It’s meaningful and an honorable end to their physical life. The spirit they leave behind comes in the form of memories, pictures around the tree and a feeling of satisfaction from a holiday well had.
A Christmas tree’s life is noble. It’s service. It’s excitement.
I love Christmas trees. And yes, I get sad to take mine down and it makes me sad to see hundreds of them on the streets of New York put out like trash. But 4 years ago I realized that the piles of fading trees on the sidewalk are a sign that happiness lives here. Those trees spent their whole lives getting ready to delight during the holidays. A Christmas tree’s life is selfless. It’s the best life there is.
So as I walk by a discarded tree on the sidewalk or a whole heap of them, I honor them and say “Thank you” or “Wow, you are beautiful” or “Hi Guys” or “You did such a great job”…I shake a branch sometimes and give a smile. I really do this. It’s a form of ministry for me. I give thanks to the trees that did so much for us at Christmas! It makes me feel good to let them know they did an amazing job as they prepare to enter their next life….as mulch!