Updated: Aug 23
Just keeping it real here…the grief journey is hard.
For all of you who are also walking through loss, know that you are not alone. Whether it’s the loss of a person, pet, job, marriage, relationship, health or dream, your pain matters. It’s ok to have days when the tears flow. When you just want things to be the way they used to be. When you want to turn back the hands of time and have one more…There is no straight path through.
As I face this first Christmas without my parents, I have found myself intentionally seeking a deeper connection with Jesus. I am quieting myself and tuning into His comforting presence.
Reading through the book of Luke is helping me to contemplate the wonderful appearance of God in the flesh, Jesus. He is Immanuel, God with us. He hasn’t left me alone to fend for myself in this dark world.
The hope I have even in this season of my grief comes from the knowledge that Jesus is proof of God’s unconditional love. He alone is the Source of my Hope. He desires a personal relationship with me. Not through religion but through an intimate connection with me in every facet of my life. He not only walks through every hill and valley I encounter in this life, but He has created a bridge to eternal life via the cross.
When we know Jesus, death is a temporary separation from our loved ones. My peace comes from knowing my parents are now in His immediate presence and know Him as fully as they are known by Him. It spurs me on to want to draw so close to Him that it will be a seamless transition to eternal life when my earthly journey comes to an end. What a great reunion it will be!!
Fortunately, peace isn’t dependent upon outside circumstances and doesn’t come from outside ourselves. Instead, when we quiet ourselves and call out to God, He is there. There in the midst of the chaos, the pain, the hurt, the confusion, the longing, the questions…He says “Peace! Be still!” (Mark 4:39, ESV). Just as Jesus calmed the storm when His disciples were terrified they were going to drown, He shows up in the middle of our storms and brings His peace.
So, wherever you are on your faith journey, I want to assure you that Jesus is real. He is waiting for you. He longs to bring His peace into whatever troubling situations you are experiencing today. And all that is needed is for you to call upon His name. He may not calm the storm, but He will calm you.
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” -James 4:8 (NKJV)
Jesus is the “Prince of Peace.” -Isaiah 9:6 (NIV)
I ask you the question: How would you like to remember December 2021?
Perhaps you will discover or rediscover the gift of salvation that began in a manger over 2000 years ago. He is as alive today as He was then, and He has come for you and me.
“Joy to the world, the Lord has come!”