A small Christmas tree grew on the edge of a forest clearing. From the side, the little tree could look at the big trees in the forest. They were very big compared to him.
Close beside him stood an old oak tree. It had a huge trunk and a mighty crown. It was very proud of its size and had a high reputation in the forest.
Many animals sought the protection of the old oak. The woodpecker had built a nest there and cared for the bark of the oak. The squirrels used the oak as a playground as well as a source of food once the acorns had ripened.
Wild boars, mice, and many other animals came as soon as the harvest was ripe. Many birds of the forest stayed in the upper part of the crown and had a wonderful view over the whole forest.
So the old oak felt very revered and looked down upon the smaller trees. It did not even notice the little Christmas tree. It only talked to the big trees in its neighborhood, like the linden or the beech. The little Christmas tree sometimes listened to them admiring themselves. It felt very small and insignificant.
Then it tried to stretch and stretch to catch a few rays of sunlight and grow faster. But the big oak and the other trees took most of the light away from it and also caught the big raindrops.
Fortunately, to the other side of the clearing, the Christmas tree could already see with its top over the bushes and shrubs in front of it. It enjoyed the view of the open field. From this side it could catch many rays of sunlight. So it went on from year to year, and the little Christmas tree got used to its boring existence.
But one day, something quite extraordinary happened. On a snowy winter day, the Christmas tree became aware of a loud noise. Suddenly it heard happy children’s voices close by and a big tractor drove up.
“Daddy, look! That’s the most beautiful Christmas tree I’ve ever seen!” exclaimed a little girl with blonde braids under her red bobble hat.
Suddenly, all the children ran around the Christmas tree and agreed with the girl. “Let’s take this one, please! It will be the most beautiful Christmas tree we have ever decorated!”
The father now came over and said, “It has grown really beautifully. It shall be our festive tree at Christmas.”
The little tree didn’t know what was happening to it. Now it was admired and chosen to crown the parlor of this family for holy Christmas. Decorated, brightly illuminated, and to the joy of all, it was now to be placed in the middle of the living room.
All the big trees suddenly paid attention. The big old oak looked quite enviously at the beautiful Christmas tree, which humbly drew all attention to itself. The little Christmas tree felt really happy for the first time in its life. Now Christmas could come.