I don’t know about you, but this Christmas season has been hard to find the “joy” in the midst of so much negative. Many households are struggling just to make ends meet after losses in income, increase in costs of living and now skyrocketing healthcare costs. Some families experienced tragedy and sadness in the loss of loved ones or close friends. Divorce rates rise the highest during the holiday season which means families torn apart and if children are involved, the reality of a broken family is all too certain to grasp. Each day passes and it is a concerted effort to just find something positive in the day. Sound familiar?
My wish for you and for our country is that in these tough times we pray. As a person who considers herself a Christian, the struggles we all face now or have faced in our lives is part of why our faith in a higher purpose is so important. That faith is what brings people together to make a difference, however small we feel it may be. If you belong to a church become involved. Even if you feel you have no talent (which we all have talent in some form) become a volunteer and greet people as they walk through the church doors, or hand out the church program as people enter the worship center. Be a part of your churches prayer group and pray for your fellow man. Your smile may make the difference to someone’s life that day and may even be that difference in yours that was needed. When we give to our favorite charity or volunteer at a homeless dinner, we are showing our love for our fellow man. We are showing our faith to others in service. I’ve just listed a few small examples but if you find some way to give back, watch how good you feel in the process.
If you don’t try, how will you know it matters?
There are days when the reality of what we hear on the national or even local news seems so overwhelmingly bad. You find yourself asking, “What can I possibly do to make a difference?” when instead you just need to act! Anything a person decides to accomplish makes a difference somehow in our day to day lives. After all, how do you think our country is the “shining city on the hill”? We still are you know…it may not seem like it at times but compared to the struggles of other countries who live under a communist regime or who are being slaughtered because they believe in God, we are far better off.
I guess my grown up Christmas wish for this season is to ask that you don’t give up. Take one day at a time and keep moving forward! Keep prayer in your life. Talk to God; having a conversation with him each day matters. Take the hesitation out of your thoughts and act on an idea or a dream you have. Set your destiny in motion and remember to always do God’s will.
Now if you are an atheist you will find this article a joke and tout how it’s fruitless to pray to someone who doesn’t exist. To you, I say “I’ll continue to pray for you no matter what.” To me, when I look at the beauty and wonder of everything that has been created including you yourself, how can there not be a God? Our heavenly Father created us in his image, and while we are all the same on the inside, we have unique qualities that make us special. Our DNA, our fingerprints, our personalities are just some of what makes us special in the eyes of our Creator. A simple sketch of evolution or the “big bang theory” doesn’t explain that. Never has and it never will.
We are not going to agree on everything. Even people of faith disagree with each other. What matters, is that we allow for those disagreements and allow for differences but we move forward to always do the best we can for the greater good. We also pray.
I understand struggles and how easy it seems to just give up and become bitter. We lost a business a few years ago when Obamacare became law. It wasn’t the first time I saw my husband cry, but it was one of the worst times. The IRS even audited us twice within a month of closing our doors. The job my husband secured just afterward he lost this year along with a job I had up until a few weeks ago. Hard times and yet I know of at least 10 people close to me that are going through similar circumstances or worse. So it would be easy to take the position of “why bother” but I refuse and I hope you do as well. I won’t give up because I can’t see a reason to do so. Who would it benefit to throw up your hands and quit trying? So you pick yourself up and try again. You keep trying until you succeed. It will happen. However, you must keep God in the picture. NO matter what, never let go of your faith. I know of someone who wishes we would give up but allowing him to win means humanity loses.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Take the time to be with family and friends. That is what truly matters anyway. Not how many wrapped presents are under the tree but faith, family and the true meaning of Christmas! In the darkest times, in the struggles, in the uncertainty of the world a life was born in a manger in the form of a baby who became our Savior. Mary and Joseph had no expensive roof over their head, no luxury car in their garage and no big income to pay for a fancy hotel room. In the midst of their struggles the greatest gift was born for all humanity. Now tell me how the gift of life cannot make a difference in this world? Mary and Joseph had nothing and yet they gave us everything.
Never give up.