The Jesse Tree

In lieu of having a traditional Christmas tree, we have decided to do a “Jesse Tree” with our boys this year.  It has been such a pleasure, not only to do a Jesse Tree craft for each lesson, but to share my faith with our boys.   A Jesse Tree, for those of you who are unfamiliar (as I was before this year), is basically a family tree that celebrates and instructs on the family heritage of Jesus from the beginning to when He was born.  I have always been a lover of family heritage anyways, so this fit perfectly into our plan for a non-traditional Christmas this year.  We wanted our boys to focus on what Christmas is REALLY about, and to think of others before themselves.  I myself wanted to focus on this, too, as usually I spend more time on buying gifts than I do focusing on WHO this season is really about.  I was very convicted this year about making Jesus the main thing.  Some days I have failed, as we all have those days.  Thankfully, God has given us grace upon grace to keep on keeping on.  So before I begin, let me sing my praises: Jesus I thank you!  You are the lover of my soul, and it is my heart’s desire to praise you and give you thanks!

Tonight’s lesson was about Ruth.  One of my favorite books of the Bible, because I have always resonated personally with Ruth.  She was a Moabitess, a foreigner, who married an Israelite and when he passed away her mother-in-law Naomi was her only family.  Ruth adored Naomi, and loved her deeply.  Because of her love for Naomi, and Naomi’s love for the LORD, Ruth told Naomi in 1:16 that “your people shall be my people, and your God, my God”.  I am moved every time I hear that.  Ask me sometime, and I’ll tell you why that resonates deep within my soul.  I’ll save that for another post, perhaps.  Naomi and Ruth traveled to Bethlehem where Ruth went to the fields of Boaz, a kinsman of Naomi’s, to glean from the fields.  Ruth worked very hard to provide for her and her mother-in-law.  Boaz saw this, and was touched by her love for Naomi.  He provided a way for Ruth to glean even more from the fields, and eventually Boaz and Ruth were married.  They had a son, Obed, and it is from this family that King David will come from, and eventually the King of Kings – Jesus!

Our memory verse for this lesson was Ruth 1:16b, which I mentioned earlier.  We had the boys make the sheaves of wheat which you see below out of pipe cleaners and embroidery floss, and we hung them on our Jesse Tree.  I have put two pictures below, one of tonight’s craft, the other of our tree.  I made it myself from supplies I bought at Hobby Lobby.  We wanted it to not look like a traditional Christmas tree, so we can continue to leave it up all year long.  We are trying to expound on each night’s lesson, and I’m hoping that by continually going over the OT leading up to Jesus will help the boys to see the beauty of God’s plan from Genesis to Revelation.

I hope that you are blessed by God’s story as well, because it is truly the greatest story ever told!

Merry Christmas!  -Jaime

John 1:16 “And from His fullness we have all received grace upon grace”

Ruth 1:16 “But Ruth said, ‘Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.'”