Finding Our Christmas Joy
Finding Our Christmas Joy
Christmas and all that it entails is admittedly different this year. For many, the mood is that of Charlie Brown’s while out for a walk with Linus.
““I think there must be something wrong with me, Linus. Christmas is coming, but I’m not happy. I don’t feel the way I’m supposed to feel.” Linus gives him an alarmed look, and they start walking again. “I just don’t understand Christmas, I guess. I like getting presents and sending Christmas cards and decorating trees and all that. But I’m still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.””
This year, many are in a Charlie Brown kind of funk. As I got to thinking about Christmas while shopping for presents, and planning our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day menus – I realized that it is possible for all of us to find the joy in the season, and we can have a strong dislike of 2020, but also recognize that there were many positives that came out of this lopsided year.
There have been many angels among us.
It is that limo driver who did a round trip drive across seven states so their client could be with their family. It was the Amazon delivery driver running into a burning home and saving a man from dying. It’s the teachers, including classmates of mine, who busted their butts 2000% to teach their classes even as technology hiccuped madly. It’s the teacher who pranked her class with fart noises. It was the people from all over who have quietly provided food, clothing, and more to families laid off due to the multiple shut downs across the country. That comforting hug, yes HUG! that was needed at just the right time to give that person the strength to continue on. It’s quietly leaving extra large tips as a way of saying thank you as well as helping out others.
Throughout this time, our faith has been shaken and our hearts have been hurt and broken. We’ve lost loved ones and friends to car accidents, diseases, illness, and Covid. Relationships have been changed for the good or ill this year. Our political landscape has certainly been in massive upheaval. But through it all, please remember that HE has been there for us. Through it all people are, this Christmas especially, reaching for joy.
“On Monday night, an older Hindu friend who’s had to work two jobs making less than he did in 2019 in order to not have to leave his adopted home told me he’d set up his Christmas tree too. “My children are American,” he said. “They love all the holidays.” We spoke of the lights, smells, and music in the air in December and January, and how they fill us with a warmth and sense of comfort much needed at the end of this year. “Soon,” he said, “it will be a new year.””
Through all the hardest of hard times this year, I’ve been reminded many times that Jesus was there and is here now.
As we’ve gone through the hard times, it has been admittedly difficult to remain positive and find joy in our lives. Yet we keep pushing through and celebrate the big and little Christmas blessings, such as our own Christmas traditions including Handel’s Messiah. We even laugh at ourselves for our failure to surprise our loved ones with special Christmas gifts.
Trying to get my husband a Christmas present: a thread.— Mary Katharine Ham (@mkhammer) December 23, 2020
My husband is very hard to shop for. He is quite particular and buys everything he wants for himself anyway. But THIS year, he mentioned one thing one time, and it was perfect. All-weather mats for the Jeep. Great!
But I have another Christmas present idea. And this one is EPIC. For those who don't know my story, I was married before, for 4 years to my 1st husband, Jake, who passed away suddenly in 2015. We had a beautiful, sassy 2-year-old daughter and I was pregnant with our second.— Mary Katharine Ham (@mkhammer) December 23, 2020
"Family law. It's *family* law." He takes a beat, he figures it out.— Mary Katharine Ham (@mkhammer) December 23, 2020
"WELL, THIS IS A [expletive] EMOTIONAL ROLLER COASTER!!"
Merry Christmas, everyone! May your surprises remain unruined, or if they must be, let them be ruined in a very funny way.
Read the entire thread!! Laughter is indeed the best medicine, and here’s hoping MK Hammer’s 2021 Christmas gift plan is an epic success!
This year, of all years, has turned out to be a year of doom and gloom according to our media betters. Folks, during this Christmas, please look around you. There have been many Christmases where it’s been a time of hardship and war. Valley Forge for one, and we’ve felt the emotions in letters sent home from the front.
Indeed people are hurting. People are sad and scared. But we must ALSO remember that there are angels all around us and that the JOY of Christmas can do more than you think. In spite of his diagnosis, Rush Limbaugh has found immeasurable joy this year.
““My point in everything today that I’m sharing with you about this is to say thanks and to tell everybody involved how much I love you from the bottom of a sizable and growing and still beating heart, and there’s room for much more. All because I have learned what love really is during this. You know, I have a philosophy there’s good that happens in everything,” he said. “It may not reveal itself immediately, and even in the most dire circumstances, if you just wait, if you just remain open to things, the good in it will reveal itself. And that has happened to me as well in countless, countless ways.””
Christmas is our gift. A gift that we are given with no string attached, a gift that gives us more than we can ever give back.
“It is a message.
It was brought to us by that perfect infant born in that manger so long ago.
He came to light the world.
He is the gift.
It is all about love.
And I hope it comes to you and comforts you and remains.”
For us, family was the best medicine this Christmas. Family near and far through Zoom, FB, and more. But most importantly, we were together as we needed to be as we also celebrate HIM. We celebrate JOY. I hope and pray for you, our readers, that you to find Joy this season.
Feature Photo Credit: Christmas by Neitjuh via Pixabay, cropped and modified