It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
Amidst the celebrations and parties, as the holidays roll around, reality is there are people who really aren’t feeling the joy this time of year. Maybe it’s that the days are shorter, or that it’s colder outside, money is especially tight, or maybe it’s coming to grips with the fact that Christmas reminds us that time is running out to accomplish all the goals we set for ourselves last January.
But There Are Dark Days, Too
For many, the “New Year Blues” is a very real thing and the holidays get overwhelming. Business owners are facing end-of-year number crunching and hoping for a healthy bottom line. Families are pinching pennies to ensure their children receive that special gift at Christmas.
Normal routines go by the wayside as schedules get scrunched just so we can fit in all of the obligations we are expected to fulfill. And of course, it’s cold and flu season. It can get hectic!
At the risk of sounding like a Debbie Downer, I realize that not all of us, and probably not even the majority of us, experience this December depression. That said, I wonder just how many people are feeling a darkness inside that the rest of us don’t even know.
Shining a Light
May I encourage you to do something this Christmas?
As you leave the house, see if you can make it your mission for the day to let your light shine on someone who might need it. The tricky part of this idea is that you really won’t know just who that might be.
That’s OK! Shine your light anyway!
Shining your light can be as simple as a smile on your face or a simple hello. It can be playing a game with your kids for a few extra minutes, and giving them some undivided attention.
It can be small talk with a co-worker where you ask about what’s happening with him and honestly listening to the answer.
He is Light!
Christmas is ALL about light! After all, we celebrate the birth of the One who came here to bring light to us all!
The word (Jesus) gave life to everything that was created, and His life brought light to everyone. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it. ~ John 1:4-5
Read that last line again. That part about darkness never extinguishing light. It’s so true. Just try walking into a dark room holding a candle and see what happens.
I know of no instance where DARK can extinguish light. Rather, it is the absence of light which cause the darkness (think sunsets or power outages). Just something to ponder.
Not About You
So today, don’t make it about you. Find opportunities to bless someone else in your world today and let your light help to stamp out their darkness. You may be surprised at how it illuminates your own heart and fulfills in you a sense of peace, as well.
And when we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
~ Maryanne Williamson (as quoted by Nelson Mandela in his 1994 inaugural speech).
A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp
and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light
to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:14-16 NIV
Who will you shine your light on today?
Have a wonderful, Merry Christmas!