Sunday, December 21, 2008

Mistletoe Anyone?

Growing up in Ohio, I never knew what Mistletoe was. I knew it was involved in a Christmas tradition: something about kissing under a little sprig of the stuff, but still I didn't know anything about the plant itself.
Then I moved to SW Germany. One winter day I wondered, what are all those round green balls in the trees around here? That was the day that I learned about mistletoe.

At the risk of upsetting this cute little Christmas tradition with the "rest of the story"...the fact is mistletoe is a parasite. Mistletoe feeds off of host trees.
I took the photo above through an upstairs window of our apartment this morning. Mistletoe grows in trees and can actually kill its host - hows that for a nice Christmas thought? I'm not a tree hugger, but those trees in our neighbor's yard could use a hug. I can almost hear them calling for help. :-)
The other day I told our student body the truth about mistletoe - cruel I know. After telling them about the little plant, I challenged them to not be "takers" like the mistletoe plant, rather be "givers" like Jesus was who came to give life and life more abundant. (John 10:10)
And then I told them, "The next time someone tries to coax you into kissing under the mistletoe, tell them, "Personally, I would prefer not to stand under a blood-sucking, low-life, vampire plant, but if you insist...ok."
Have a great Christmas - look for me somewhere far away from the mistletoe.


  1. does your WIFE feel about mistletoe and the Christmas tradition? hmmm?

  2. Well.....she thinks I'm a grinch. Hey, I'm just trying to educate the people.

  3. Wow. Between that, and all the fir trees that get cut down and shuffled off to die in myriad living rooms, 'tis the season for arborcide!

    Maybe we should wish each other a green Christmas...