Long before our culture had such things as a map, an atlas, or GPS, people used to look to the sky for directions. Not because they were praying to God to help them find their way after they got lost, but to look at the stars. For many centuries the stars in the sky had been used for navigation.
- Sailors out at sea would look up at the stars, find a constellation, a group of stars, and by knowing what day it was, they could look at a chart and see what part of the sky that particular constellation would be in. By using this information sailors would know which direction they needed to point the ship.
- Even farmers had a use for reading the stars. In some parts of the world there is not much difference between the seasons, and long before calendars became so common, farmers needed a way to tell which season was which, so they knew when to plant their crops.
Each star in the sky God has put there for a reason. Each Star hanging on our ‘Tree of Memories’ was placed for a reason as well. Whether the reason is to honor a loved one, a current patient, a family member, a friend or someone who took care of someone important to you the star is significant. They have left an impact on lives in different ways but those lives will continue to impact others. There is always a chain reaction that continues whether a person is still living or is no longer upon this earth with us. They have made lives a little brighter.
Because someone has made our lives a little brighter, let me ask each of you something:
- Have you ever noticed when you look up at the stars in the sky how the stars shine brightest when the sky around it is the darkest? Or have you noticed those times when the stars in the sky don’t seem as bright and we would have to struggle just a little to see them. And even then, they aren’t very clear?
- Some of the names written on the Stars that have been hung on the ‘Tree of Memories’ have made lives a little brighter when all around us is sadness and stress. They have touched lives in ways that make us thankful.
- Those individuals written on the Stars sometimes shine more brightly than other times but always remember how God has placed special people in our lives and how He continues to bless us through them. But also remember how He continues to walk with us when our steps are difficult on our journey.
I read recently that some of the stars we see in the sky are actually dead. They have burnt out many, many years ago. But because they are so far away, the light we are still seeing is still traveling toward us.
- There are many stars upon our Tree. Stars that represent special people God blesses our lives with and some of those Stars are no longer living upon this earth.
- While they were living they shined like a star. And even though they are gone, we can still see their light, and that light will still guide us along the path of life.
- Their influence will still be felt.
They were and are God’s Special Gift that keeps on giving!
So during this Christmas Season remember all those STARS upon the ‘Tree of Memories’ and others that may be placed there belong to God FIRST, but, He has blessed us with their presence because He loves us!
Shared by Major Marie Hollett at the Annual ‘Tree of Memories’ Celebration, December 11, 2013