How can we think about celebrating the holidays and holiday preparation when there is so much sadness in the news? It’s difficult to get in a festive mood with all that is going on in our world today.
The holidays are a sad time for so many. They are sad for me too. I usually spend time with family and friends and I enjoy every moment. But deep down, I’m sad. Sad for those who have lost a loved one this past year and this will be their first Thanksgiving without them. I’m sad for those who have lost their home because of a hurricane or a fire. They do not have a table to eat at or a stove to cook a turkey.
How can we be joyful and jolly when so many are hurting? It affects me to hear about the devastation. One of the first things I do when the news is really getting to me is turn it off. I shut down social media too if it’s causing anger or anxiety in my heart.
Putting things in perspective helps and focusing on what matters.
I’ve been thinking about this lately and want to share some thoughts to help you and I prepare our heart for this holiday season.
One way is to spending time with friends and family. This is much more important than spending money you do not have on something they do not want or need. Don’t focus so much on the ‘presents’ but focus on ‘presence’ with others.
Think up ways to make the atmosphere positive and fun when you are all together. The White Elephant game is always a fun one for Christmas.
Another way to focus on what matters is reaching out to others. Spend some time visiting those in a nursing home. Or serve at a food bank or homeless shelter. Donate blood. Donate money. There are many places to volunteer. Google “Volunteering in my area” and you will find many places to serve. When I volunteer, it takes my mind off me. You come home with the best feeling of making the world a better place for someone. You will be blessed.
A third way is to love and serve your family. All year long. Be nice. Say kind words. Speak in love. Forgive. Don’t bring up past mistakes. Don’t criticize. You never know when they will be gone. What if the last thing I said to John was complaining or criticizing him for something. I don’t want that to ever happen. I don’t think you do either with your loved ones.
And last, remember this life is temporary. The Bible calls this life a vapor.
“Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” James 4:14
What matters is eternity. This life will fade away, then we enter an eternity. Heaven or Hell. You choose. If you are headed to Heaven, then you will experience a full life of no pain, no heartache, no wars or hurricanes. Heaven is filled with LOVE. What matters is telling others about Jesus. What matters is accepting Jesus and living for Him. What matters is praying for those affected.
My prayer is for all to have the Hope of Heaven.
Maybe you think, Bah Humbug, at these suggestions. And that’s ok, for a time. Sometimes I need to push myself to do good in order to feel good. There are days I don’t want to do the volunteer thing, but when I push myself, I’m always glad I did.
It’s your turn. Share in the comments one thing you do during the holiday season to bring joy to someone else.
The tragic news leaves us hopeless. But we have an Anchor of Hope available. His name is Jesus.
Linking up with others at Holley’s site at HolleyGerth.com