Friday, December 8, 2017
by Tammy Terry
Growing up, Christmas was always a very magical time of the year. School programs, baking cookies, decorating, shopping, as well as all of our church activities, were many of the things that made this season so special; crazy, but fun and very magical. I couldn’t wait for December. I lived in a haze of childlike wonder. At the very center of this was my mother. She always worked very hard to make things special for her family. It seemed like she was a million places at once, doing a million things, with abundant energy. I am sure that wasn’t the case, but she made it seem so. Even after we were grown, she made everything special. We knew we were loved and cherished.
My mom passed away in the spring of 2016. I entered the holiday season with a big empty space in my heart. My husband and daughter were wonderful and understanding, but my sister and I clung to each other, desperately trying to find our way through an emotional minefield. Everything reminded us of what we had lost. I had lost my “Christmas focus.” I had lost my inner joy and peace that I always felt at this time of year.
A year has gone by, and while that empty space will always be in my heart, I am regaining my joy by focusing on some different things. I am thankful for those close to me that I will share the holiday with: my husband and daughter, siblings, other family and good friends. I am focusing on the wonder of the Christ child. I am focusing on the simple joy and peace of this time of the year. I am focusing on reading my Bible daily and our family Advent readings.
I am finding that when I am “Christ centered,” my joy and peace have returned.
Focus on the blessings you have, and keep Christ at the center all year long.
TODAY: Pray for someone you know who is a schoolteacher.