You know, I was have a perfectly great Christmas December until I read today's devotion and a flood of bad memories came back. I've always struggled with Christmas, moreso in the last 10 years. A lot of rejection and family who does not know how to love has caused me a lot of pain. I often just want Christmas to be over because then I begin to feel better.
I have seen a lot of things on Facebook this year and have heard it in church sermons too recognizing that Christmas is not always a merry time for everyone. There are those that are lonely on Christmas, like us. At least we have each other and for a short time one son to be with on Christmas Day. There are a lot of people who have no one at all. What hurts the most for me is the memory of Christmases past where I learned from my Grandparents that family was important and always took those values highly, only to find out that other family did not value it so highly. All those painful years I pushed through and went anyway and then cried all the way home because of my values and then they have no efforts at all.
There are a lot of people who have no money for gifts for their children or even for a decent roof over their head. Sometimes I believe in my heart that these people really do find a way to have the best merry love day over those who have a lot more. You won't find any gifts under our tree. Christmas is rather just a relaxing day at home after we go to church. It is a little bit like any other day. Yes, we did send some gifts this year by mail. Yes, we do have a gift shopping trip with our son locally. But we buy and exchange and have nothing to unwrap on Christmas Day. Sometimes I wonder if I will get one gift the whole season.
But that's not what Christmas is all about anyway. It is all about the gift that Jesus has already given us and I am glad to have taken the focus off of spending money and put the focus on spending time for Jesus.
I suppose I have been doing some healing as so far this year, I've been riding the waves and enjoying my time with hubby without a thought of pain . . . until I read this devotion. Not a good way to start a Saturday morning.
Please pray with me. Lord, for as high as the heavens are above the earth, Your steadfast love for me expands. Thank You for loving me and for chasing away my blues. Thank You for forgiving me and showing compassion on me. You know my sins of selfishness when I feel the pains of rejection and loneliness. Guide my heart and mind to think of others and find ways to help them rather than thinking on my own sorrows. Being alone on Christmas is almost unbearable for some people and it spoils the real meaning of Christmas for so many. May everyone on this earth be able to feel a little bit of love this Christmas. Comfort Your people, Lord. I just have a hard time understanding how our cities can be so full of people and yet there are people alone and lonely. Our churches are so full during Worship, yet people go home lonely on Christmas Day. It just does not seem right! My heart aches for those whose heart aches. This earth full of communities needs a better way to connect lonely people with others. But how? You created for Adam his companion as an example that people are not supposed to be alone. Then there are the soldiers who cannot come home and are missing their families. They may have other soldiers around them, but nothing is like the love of family. There are those, Lord, who are stuck in a hospital or a nursing home and, although there may be carolers and people around them, they have no one who loves and cares to visit them individually. Hear their cry, Lord! Silent days and silent nights not surrounded by family are certainly trials of this world. Enrich their lives with people who care. May all Your children feel accepted and loved and not rejected. In every need of the heart, Lord, help Your children to chase away the bad memories and find the good moments in their day. Help us to turn to you and rejoice and be glad for this is the day You have made for us! Help us to learn deep in our hearts that You, O Lord, are sufficient for us where men and women fail. Thank You for being enough for us. Come quickly to deliver us. In Your holy name I pray. Amen.
On the same page,
(first posted 12/19/15)