We are in the midst of the holiday season. Let’s remember to remember each other. Let us reach out to one another and spread some CHRISTmas cheer. Actually, let’s keep aiming to do it all year round! You don’t know what somebody else is going through. You don’t know who maybe missing a loved one this holiday. Someone maybe experiencing some sadness and you might be just what they need to get through.
It has been a long year for my family. Since December ’06, we’ve loss several family members and several friends whom we love and whose lives and deaths have impacted and changed our lives greatly. I often found myself saying, “My God, how are we going to get through this one?” I thought about it when my Aunt Claudia passed in December ’06. I though about it again when my Aunt Polly passed in January, my cousin Billy in July, my friend from childhood, Vanessa, my friend David this past Thanksgiving. Now, I’ve found myself wondering the same thing this week as my family grieves over the unexpected death of our close family member, Annabelle Jackson. That was my girl! Full of wisdom, life, laughter and a love for God and a love for family. Her homegoing was celebrated today in Whitehall, Alabama.
But as I have wondered many times this year how we will get through- as I think about all that has happened, as I’m flooded with emotions that just can’t be put into words, God in all His greatness knows exactly what to do to get us through. We are a strong people but even strong people have those moments. Someone who I have a lot of respect for told me, “You don’t have to be strong, Jesus in you is. Just be real, be authentic and cry if you want to.” Those are liberating words. (Thanks Dr. Wanda) So I share that with you.
We often feel the need to be the strong one- the one that holds everybody up. Can’t show signs of weakness. Don’t let ’em see you cry. Sometimes that can create a false sense of strength and a false sense of responsibility. It makes it difficult to grieve or express emotions. But remember God created you and your emotions.
I want to remind you that just as God is with us in our good days, in our laughter, in our joy and in our happiness, He is also right there with us in our grief, in our pain, in our sorrow, in our anger, and in our sometimes not understanding why things happen the way they do. Our human strengths collapses, but God’s strength holds firm always. Remember to let that be the strength you rely on. Remember that no matter what, God’s got you and He knows how to take care of you.
It is not my intent to make anybody sad today. But I think it is a good time to remember the value of life and living and the value of the people we have been blessed to have in our lives. Remember to embrace your life. Live, laugh, love and lean on the everlasting arms of God.
2nd Corinthians 12:9 states, “And He said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.”
Stay in God’s presence and embrace His strength!
Wendy M. Reynolds