A Difficult Christmas

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Christmas is meant to be a time of joy, festivity and love. However, for some it is a difficult time. Whether it’s because of major life struggles and challenges we face, or because of painful memories associated with this time of year.

How do we make it through this festive time, when our hearts are wounded?

Reflecting on that first Christmas is a start. Mary and Joseph knew they were called to be parents of a Holy Child, and yet they could not provide a decent place for this child to be born. This required a lot of trust on their part.

The wise men who were seeking him, had only a star to guide them. The star that would only have shone in the darkness, by day they travelled by faith and memory and not by sight.

It is a grace, a gift of God to be able to find joy and peace during suffering and difficulty. I believe this requires a deep faith and trust in God. Like the still waters at the bottom of the raging river, a person with deep faith will rest in God in those deep, peaceful waters while the waves crash overhead.

Through faith we find the strength to move forward, to forgive, to love and to smile through our wounded hearts.

I pray those of you who are in need of healing, and most of us are, will have the courage to give your wounded heart to Christ so that he can heal your wounds and illuminate your path.

I leave with the words from Max Lucado “Perhaps the wound is old, and you are angry. Or perhaps the wound is fresh, and you are hurt. Part of you is broken, and the other part of you is bitter. Part of you wants to cry, and part of you wants to fight…. There is a fire burning in your heart. It’s the fire of anger…

There you are left with a decision. Do I put the fire out or heat it up? Do I get over it or get even? Do I release it or resent it? Do I let the hurts heal, or do I let the hurt turn into hate?

The worst part of all is that, without forgiveness, bitterness is all that is left.”

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