3 Important Truths to Remember when your “Holiday feels more like a Hole-iday”

My heart was breaking for them.

It was their first Holiday without their mom.  My dear friend had passed in August 2016 and as the Holidays approached, I knew it was going to be a difficult Christmas for her kids.

Sometimes “Christmas can feel more like a hole-iday than a holiday.”

I heard this quote in Max Lucado’s Christmas book, Because of Bethlehem. Sadly, I think many of us have felt this way.  Can you relate?  Are you feeling deep sadness this Holiday season?  Are you grieving the loss of a loved one?

First let me say that I am so sorry.  I understand how hard it is to deeply miss someone you love.

I want to encourage you today with 3 important truths to remember when “your Holiday feels more like a Hole-iday.”

1. Remember “when everything shakes, God remains unshaken.”

This is another great quote from Max’s book, Because of Bethlehem. This is so good, let me say it again:

Friends, when your world gets turned upside down, please cling to the truth that God has not changed. Your circumstances may have changed, but you are still a child of God, chosen and deeply loved.

2. Remember God is faithful!  

Friends, God’s presence became so real to me in my grief. I can confidently say that He will walk with you through this difficult time and offer you comfort and love.  I know it is not easy to walk through loss; it is even harder around the Holidays.

Please give yourself lots of grace.  Surround yourself with friends and family that can offer empathy.  Be honest about how you are feeling and let others know what you need. 

3. Remember that God sees you and has not forgotten you. 

When you feel alone, please cling to the truth that God “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted.” (Psalms 34:18) He wants to walk through your grief with you. Seek Him daily and let him turn your pain into His purpose.

I am praying for all the hurting hearts this Christmas season.   

Love, Jodi

Note: This week on my Depth podcast, Lisa Appelo shares her powerful testimony of God’s faithfulness in her grief. Eight years ago, Lisa became a sudden widow and single mom to her 7 children. You do not want to miss how she has found hope in the middle of her hard circumstances, 

To listen, click on the following link: https://link.chtbl.com/vZzTid7o

A Life Changing Choice

I have a choice.  You have one too. 

“If you ask people who don’t believe in God why they don’t, the number one reason will be suffering.  If you ask people who believe in God when they grew most spiritually, the number one answer will be suffering.”

Wow, I just recently read this quote by John Ortberg in Michele Cushatt’s new book, Relentless: The Unshakable Presence of a God Who Never Leaves. She wrote this book for “those who find their faith flagging, their fear fanning. It’s for the men and women who feel beat up by a faith that has failed them and a God who has disappointed them. It’s for those who doubt but want to believe.”

Does this describe you? Do you feel like God has forgotten you in the middle of your unexpected storm?  Does your mind flood with questions like “where are you God” and “why is this happening to me”?  Are you feeling heartbroken and alone and doubting God’s goodness? 

I know exactly how you feel.  I had these same questions.

There is something about being taken to a place of complete heartbreak where you have to choose either to run to God with your pain or run away from God in anger.

In the middle of my tears and devastation, I chose to run to God with my pain, and I want to encourage you to do the same.

Friends, this is a life changing choice.

God never meant for you to walk through your heartbreak alone.  He wants to give you the gift of His presence in the middle of the pain.  He wants to comfort you and help strengthen you as you fully depend on Him. 

Are you going to turn toward Him or away from Him?

I want to share with you a prayer I found in my journal. In the middle of your tears, cry out to Him and say,

God, I am running to you with my arms wide open. I need you to get me through this tough time. Please help me to keep my mind and my thoughts focused on you and you alone.

God wants to meet you in your pain in a way you never knew possible.

Michele shares in her book that “His presence is relentless.” Keep running to Him daily. He will strengthen you during this storm.

I believe going through heartbreak on your own is nearly impossible. But, going through heartbreak with God walking alongside you and even carrying you, leads you to place of great strength. 

I have a choice. You have one too. 

Love, Jodi