It feels like for every snowflake that falls, you shed a tear.
Your heart is broken. Your spirit is crushed. And the weight of the world is practically pressing you down to your knees.
And yet it is Christmas.
The rest of the world is smiling, shopping, singing, and full of great cheer.
Yet you are parentless, childless, jobless, or fighting a disease that refuses to die.
It is Christmas and you are heartbroken.
Your “to do” list continues just like everyone else. Shopping needs to be done. Presents need to be wrapped. Christmas cards are arriving, and you don’t have the mental energy to get off the couch, so how in the world can you even think about addressing your own cards?
It is Christmas and you aren’t just heartbroken. You are flat out broken.
The world is celebrating God’s greatest gift to us, and your own prayers don’t seem to be heard.
But God will only give you what you can handle, right? Isn’t that what all the Christians say? And God has a plan. Everything happens for a reason.
Are you really suppose to be able to handle the death of your spouse? Did God really plan for you to lose your baby? Is there a good reason for the cancer or the bill collectors or your marriage falling apart or your tragic accident?
I don’t think so.
I believe that you will receive more than you can handle, but that God will take over from there. He does have a plan, but we live in a broken world. And while we can learn and grown from our sorrows, sorrow isn’t what God wants for you.
I choose to believe that while you are heartbroken at Christmas, God is crying along with you.
And that is why we have Christmas.
God sent His son to earth to shatter the tears, the sorrow, and the heartbreak. He had a plan to erase the hurt of the world when He allowed His son to die.
And because of Jesus’s birth and his death, we may suffer on earth, but we will rejoice together in heaven.
But right now, in this moment it is Christmas. And you are heartbroken. The sadness refuses to leave.
So how do you cope?
God is listening, even when it seems like He is gone. Thank him. Start with something small. Praising Him through our tears is one of the greatest gifts we can give.
Make a list.
Start with list of no’s. Say no to the Christmas cards you don’t have time to send. Say no to the Christmas party you don’t really want to attend. Say no to it all if you have to.
Then make your list of yes’s. Yes to getting out of bed. Yes to hugging your kids. Yes to what makes you smile.
Yep. Just breathe.
Breathe deep and know that you are not the only heartbroken person struggling through Christmas.
Breathe deep and know that some lady who shares her thoughts online for the world to read is thinking of you and your sorrow even though she doesn’t know your story.
Breathe deep and know that God’s love for you is more than you can possibly fathom – even when He feels so very far away.
Update: In December 2016, I recorded a Sorta Awesome podcast episode on grief with Megan Tietz. Megan and I discuss our various experiences with grief (miscarriage, divorce, etc), how grief has affected our holidays, and ways you can support others who are experience grief. Listen to Sorta Awesome episode 80 “Offering Gentle Comfort in Times of Grief (During The Holidays and Beyond)” here.