We are entering the holiday season. It seems that once we celebrate Halloween it is a mad rush through a dizzying array of holidays. We go from Thanksgiving to Christmas to New Year’s at a blistering pace as we try to keep up with all our usual responsibilities, year-end responsibilities, and holidays. It is amazes us how much there is to do and how little time. The days get shorter, but the lists get longer. For many it is a wonderful time of celebration. It is an experience of family, faith, and friends.
Some of us have a twinge of sadness along the way. We pull out the favorite ornament of a loved one. We unsuccessfully attempt to make Grandma’s potato salad. We see a picture of dad dressed as Santa. We realize that our loved one will not be with us to share in the joy of the season. We become a little sad. We miss them.
We are not alone in missing someone. In fact, many of us miss a loved one. As you go through hustle and bustle of the holiday season, take time to acknowledge the sadness and to honor the ones who are not with you. Maybe that means doing something for them. It could be baking and sending your children’s favorite cookies to them. It could be creating a youtube private video so that you can read to your grandson. It could be baking a late husband’s favorite dessert. It could be another attempt at Grandma’s potato salad. In a season when we are so strongly encourage to celebrate continuously, take time to acknowledge and feel. Honor those you miss. Let yourself be a whole person with all of your emotions.
Remember, you are a wonderful creation of God and God loves you just as you are. So don’t try to be someone different. Let the feelings flow, then use them to transform the world to the glory of God.
We all have memories that come up during the Advent and Christmas season. For me, it was a college retreat where I began to have a sense of my call into ministry. The retreat center had been a convent at one time. During evening prayers, a small band of believers sang O Come, O Come Emmanuel. The song still brings those memories of new beginnings to mind. May this Advent be a season for new beginnings for you.