How to more than just survive Christmas.

Christmas can be challenging all by itself and when you have been through a life changing experience, like the death of a child, it can be unbearable.  Family gatherings can be a painful reminder of what was supposed to be.  This was supposed to be the first Christmas with your baby.  Instead you are forced to paste on a smile for your family and pretend that your heart isn’t broken.  I have had several Christmas’ where I carried a broken heart for one reason or another.  I went to my family gatherings not realizing that I expected my family to make it better.  I didn’t know it but somehow I expected that they should know how much I hurt and give me the compassion and understanding that I deserved.  That never happened and I always left feeling sad and angry but I didn’t really understand why. Well it’s taken me a long time but God is beginning to show me why.  He is starting to reveal my expectations and show me why every Christmas leaves me feeling sad and unfulfilled.  My heart has been full of expectations that I didn’t even know I had.  I expected to be loved, consoled, and understood by people who have never loved, consoled or understood me.  No wonder I don’t like Christmas.  This year I’m doing it different.  This year I was given the Peace Prayer of St. Francis.  God has used this prayer to reveal to me my expectations of others and to realize that I need only have these expectations of Him.  After all, He is the only one who will never fail me.  So I’m going to Christmas this year to love others, to understand others, to give to others.  Yes, my heart will still be broken but I will no longer expect my family to make it better.  I am going with the intention of showing love, hope, faith and forgiveness to someone in my family who needs it, instead of waiting for someone to do it for me.  There is only one healer of the brokenhearted, and only one who understands the depth of your pain over the loss of your baby, only one.  That’s Jesus.  So with this prayer I challenge you this Christmas with your broken heart and all.  Be the person that you want someone to be for you.  Recognize a difficulty that somebody might be facing….give a hug that someone didn’t know they needed and really mean it….and by all means leave your expectations at home.  My wish for you this Christmas is to experience the blessing of sewing love, forgiveness, faith, hope, and joy in the life of someone else.  Merry Christmas.





Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;

where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury, pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master,

grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;

to be understood, as to understand;

to be loved, as to love;

for it is in giving that we receive,

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,

and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.



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