I have been asked to write December's blog on grief and Christmas. I have given it much thought, and actually delayed in writing it, because it is strikes too close to home for me..
For some it is Merry Christmas; Happy Holidays; Joyous Noel; Most Wonderful Time of the Year; Rocking Around the Christmas Tree. But for others perhaps, it is Silent Night; Blue Christmas; All I want for Christmas; I'll Be Home for Christmas......you get it?
We don’t understand and ask, why do parents bury their 11 year old son. Why do daughters look through a window outside to say goodbye to their mom? Why are first time moms losing their first unborn child? Why are wives burying their husband through sickness or tragic loss? Why are husbands holding the hands of their life partner as they say farewell? Why are children, young and old, not able to wish their parents "Merry Christmas" or stand at the Christmas card display to find that perfect card that says it all? Yet through all of this pain every December it comes, the 12th month of the year. With it comes tinsel, trees, colourful lights, carols, Christmas parties, and celebrations. We think, well maybe not this year!
Then it comes -- December 25th. The day we have been waiting for with all its wrappings and bows; turkey, stuffing, and killer gravy; cookies, chocolates, and eggnog.
We will celebrate with everyone with Joyous Noel on our faces while our hearts are playing ‘Silent Night’ or ‘All I want for Christmas is You’. The celebration comes from the joy we see in the eyes and faces of our children or grandchildren. We celebrate this because of HOPE. The HOPE that a baby born in a manger brought to us over 2000 years ago.
Jesus is our HOPE, my HOPE. Even though grief and loss is felt so deeply during this time of year, I still have the HOPE of eternity. I have the PEACE that comes from the Prince of Peace. My Wonderful Counselor fills my heart with comfort. He will never leave me because he is my Everlasting Father and a Mighty God. ‘Isaiah 9:6’.
My encouragement to you during ‘The Most Wonderful Time of the Year’ is to celebrate! Take the time to remember your loved one you are missing and grieving. Hang an ornament on your tree in their memory. Light a candle. Wrap a gift with your thoughts and memories in it and just put it under the tree. Make their favourite Christmas cookie. My mom's aprons have been special to me and my nieces. Now I have started a Christmas tradition of giving my four girls a new apron at Christmas time.
My ‘Simple Christmas Wish for You’ is that the HOPE of the Christ Child will fill your hearts. May He be your PEACE, COUNSELOR, and EVERLASTING FATHER this Christmas Season.