Past Christmases and Thanksgivings with my parents, and my kids have played over and over in my mind. These were times that were always so special. My parents always made the holidays into times of wonder for us. I think that they were often more excited than we were to see our reactions to the presents, lights, tree, food, etc. I remember the sight of my own kids being so excited to go to Nana’s (we always had our holidays at my Mom’s house) and the gatherings we all shared there with both of my sister’s and their families and usually several other friends. There are so many wonderful memories
Living in the present during the holidays, for me, is an up and down roller coaster. I miss my parents and most of my kids live so far away now, that I miss them, too! It’s harder during the holidays to not have them near, I think. I don’t feel that I “know” them or my grandkids well enough, anymore, to know what they like, so I can’t get excited about what to give them.
I am so grateful, though that Robert is here with my hubby and I and that we have the corgis. I’m usually to busy to dwell for long, on the sadness of those that are missing from my life, now, and that is a good thing so that I don’t go into a depression.
I’ve spent a LOT of time praying for so many of my friends and relatives that are also having a hard time this year: My oldest son and his four daughters that lost their Mom this past January, and another son that is having problems finding a job to support his family and dealing with the stresses of life that financial instability brings. I have so many friends and loved ones that are having huge problems with health issues, too, to pray for.
I think that the pain in those around me, that I know and love, is something that I have to be very careful to “cast” on Jesus, for He’s told me to “Cast all my cares upon Him, for He cares for me.” I know that He has everything in His control and can use all problems and joys to work together for the good for those that love Him, and I am so blessed to know that most of my loved ones DO know Him.
I know that He loves all those that I love that DON’T know Him yet, and is working in their lives to draw them to Himself, and that helps me too, to have faith that He is working things out! These are some of the things in the future that I can look forward to… that and seeing all my “dearly departed” that have gone home to a place of peace and rest that I can look forward to as well.
Each day, as I’ve been listening to the Christmas Carols that are being sung, I’ve been trying to LISTEN to the words and think about what they are saying, telling of the joy that God brought into the world when He GAVE HIS son, knowing what that would mean … a life filled with the joys, sorrows, pain and love that would allow Jesus to KNOW what life as a human was like, and then to sacrifice that Son He loved so that WE wouldn’t have to pay the price for our sins…