Yesterday, I was so emotional all day, I felt I had to hold back the tears with all my might. It all began when I read a Facebook status update from a friend and relative who has lost her grandmother and grandfather within almost a month of each other and how she is struggling with the grief while trying to maintain a cheerful home for her children during the holidays. The feelings just washed over me like a tidal wave of how much I miss my own grandfather, even though, he’s been gone for over 12 years now. So much changed within my family after his death, and without him here, it will never be the same. Christmas has never been the same without him.
Several times throughout the day, I thought of him, and I began thinking of so many who have lost a mom, a dad, a child, or another loved one during this past year and even those who have lost someone during the past several years. I, also, thought of so many families I know who are facing divorce, or have already divorced, and even though their significant other hasn’t died physically, their love has died, and that is as painful as the reality of death. Losing a precious family member or friend makes the holidays a little tougher to handle. It makes the cheer and the joy of the season seem a little less festive, and sometimes, it makes it a lot less festive, maybe not even worth celebrating at all. Often, losing a loved one, especially those who filled such a huge part of our heart and our home, makes the Christmas season almost unbearable. Everyone else is cheerful, excited and filled with joy for all the wonderful things that bring the love of Christmas, and our world has just turned a little more gray from the loss of color with which our loved one took away.
If you are one whose world is a little more gray today, there is hope! It’s not a fairy tale, and it’s not a fallacy. It’s not a plastic mask which you wear just to convince your family that you’re okay. It’s, also, not a “snap of the finger and you’re perfect” solution, and it’s not a formula nor is it a potion or a thought. It’s not even an “it.” It’s a person, a Messiah, a Savior and a King.
His name is Jesus. He can comfort your heart and encourage your soul. He can give you peace which surpasses understanding. He can consume your mind with good thoughts, and He can give you a reason to get up one more day. He is HOPE. He is LOVE. He is LIFE, and He can give you all this and more. All you have to do is call on His name, and He will answer. He will wrap you in His arms of love, and He will give you purpose again. All you have to do is just trust Him.
For all of us who have learned to cope with the deep scars of loss, and for those who have yet to experience this heart-wrenching pain, maybe we can be a little kinder to those who are hurting this Christmas season. Maybe we can be a little more attentive to those who may not feel as festive as we expect them to be. Maybe we can share a little more love, a little more encouragement, a little more hope. Those of us who have found this One Hope who helps us survive through the darkest of nights, we must share Him with those around us. We must share this Hope with a hurting and desperate world. We must share why our Christmas is so Merry.
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6