Beliefnet
A Touch of Encouragement

A Sad sort of Christmas.jpg Hey! It’s Christmas! So, what are you doing at the computer?
I was hoping you’d be having dinner with your family or your friends, or maybe opening presents, or on your way out to someone’s house for turkey. But if you’re not, then I’m guessing you logged on because you really DID need a touch of encouragement today. Maybe the family dynamics are getting messy right now? A difficult relative. Or maybe a missing one. Maybe it’s not the “big” Christmas that other years and other economies made possible. Maybe you just don’t feel very good.


Maybe it’s your first Christmas without someone you love. Or maybe something tells you this will be your last Christmas together. Or maybe you’re all alone and lonely. I’ve had all those Christmases, not to mention the one where the pressure cooker blew up and I spent Christmas Eve washing squash off the kitchen ceiling and my sister’s dog.
Whatever is going on today with you, I wanted to wish you Merry Christmas, even if it may not be as merry this year as in other years. And whatever you’re going through, don’t forget that you’re going THROUGH it, and with God’s help, you’re going to come out the other side.
Think of the beautiful lyrics from that haunting, sad sort of Christmas carol that even as it cries out for help still manages to sing of hope:
“Oh come, Oh come Emmanuel and ransom captive Israel that mourns in lonely exile here until the Son of God appears.”
Emmanuel means “God with us.” That is the true gift of Christmas that will carry you through this day and all the rest of your days. YOU CAN DO THIS – You can get through this day lonely or angry or stressed or exhausted. You can do this – you can get through today not because of anything I say, but because God is with you, right beside you, if you will let Him come. You can walk back into that living room or dining room or kitchen or whatever place you have escaped from – you can turn off this computer and have – maybe not a Merry Christmas – but a Good Christmas, a Strong Christmas, a Hopeful Christmas, a Tolerant Christmas, a Peaceful Christmas with your family and friends…..or even alone.
Because the truth is, you are not alone. Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel!
With love to all,
Martha

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