You queue up Bing Crosby on Spotify, the sounds float through the air triggering memories of Christmas past. You're wearing the typically ugly sweater or gorgeous dress, and you're surrounded by not only the warmth of love but the warmth of a home. You stare lovingly at the tree you and your family decorated so carefully while getting lost in the memories that each ornament brings. As the smell of a honey-baked ham brings you back to reality, you go sit at a table full of faces that you know and love. This is home. This is Christmas.
The prayers begin, gratitude and Jesus surround the table, and if only for a moment, all is well. While we smile at the ones we love, our hearts are also reminded that this is not what Christmas looks like to every family. This Hallmark version of a warm home and a full meal is a privilege we often take for granted. At Flash Love, we see first hand the dozens of families that view Christmas as a reminder of all that they don't have and can't provide. We've hugged the ones who feel helpless when their kids ask Santa for gifts that won't be under the tree. That is if they can even afford a tree. We live in a community where there are real hardships and heartbreak. Where the way we talk about the miracles of our Big God can be frustrating to someone who hasn't eaten in days because the little food they do have, is for their children. Instead of reminding people that Jesus loves them, we know that our God would show action. And this year, that's exactly what we did. A team of 50 souls packed into our Bus with Christmas trees and hugs in tow, as we set out to not only deliver a Christmas tree to struggling families but to also deliver the hope and share the truth, that people care whether we know you or not.
With coffee and Jesus fueling the spirit of Christmas, we set out on a mission to love those who haven't felt it in far too long.
The bus was flooded with music and Santa hats that bounced at each bump, reminding us of the silly joy that life can bring. The Incredible team at Yesteryear Tree Farm decided to graciously donate 30 trees to families in need, further restoring hope to a city and the people within it. Then, the giving souls at HD Fowler helped to transport the trees from Wilsonville to Vancouver, to ensure safe delivery.
As the bus pulled up to the first home, the energy was high and God was present. Then, miracles were witnessed by hopeless families, who now watched a community come together to ensure them that God did not forget you, you are loved, and you matter.
So when we're asked, "what does Christmas mean to us?" Our answer is simple. It means obeying the creator by serving the creation. It means to stand up for those who aren't able to stand up for themselves. It means to show love through action, not just words. From the Flash Love family to your family, we wish you a very Merry Christmas! God Bless everyone.