Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
As we enter into another Advent season yet again, memories of summer and autumn fade almost as quickly as the crimson and yellow leaves detach from the branches of trees and fall to the ground. The days continue to grow colder, daylight hesitantly gives way to the darkness of night, and we approach the longest night of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, December 21st, the winter solstice (literally – “standing still”).
For some, the seasons of Advent and Christmas can be a difficult time. Those who grieve the loss of loved ones, employment, income, or whom experience life altering circumstances find that this time of year causes some to feel depressed, stressed, frustrated, sad, etc. And with the the commercialization of the holiday season, feelings of the “holiday blues” are often magnified since societal expectations are such that we are all supposed to feel happy, cheerful, joy filled and peaceful during this time. Individuals who feel “blue” sometimes find that there is an added sense of guilt for not feeling merry and cheerful.
People whom experience the “holiday blues” are encouraged to reach out to trusted loved ones, friends, or trained professionals and talk about your feelings and experiences during this time. Reflecting upon the following scripture passages can be a very meaningful Advent and Christmas devotional; Psalm 27; Psalm 46; Psalm 121; Isaiah 9:2-7; Isaiah 40:1-11; Isaiah 40:28-31; Isaiah 43:1-3a; Matthew 5:14-16; Matthew 11:28-30; John 1:1-5, 10-14; John 8:12; Romans 8:31-35, 37-39.
May the Light of Christ who is our light and salvation surround the entire world with wisdom, strength, and love as we await His coming into the world to bring peace throughout the hearts of nations.
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! (Revelations 22:20)