Restoring Joy – Part 4

WEB TEAM Langley Church

Last week I shared a breakdown I experienced (was going through). It was the result of shame, negativity and lies I was telling myself. It was rooted in relational strains, wanting more control of my life and ideas for change I could not express. I’m still wrestling with parts of what caused the breakdown, however instead of feeling empty/hurt, I am filled with anticipation and hope.

Why? Through opening up and being vulnerable I had a few people in my inner circle connect with me. I was able to share more with them and they encouraged me to keep moving forward in each area I was struggling with. They responded with love and compassion. They listened, spoke truth, offered some advice and in some cases were God’s answer to some of the needs/prayers I had.

I want to recognize and not minimize the hurt/pain/loss you are feeling; especially if your situation is resulting from a significant person who died or you are walking a journey with a spouse, parent, child or friend battling to beat covid-19, cancer, substance abuse or other physical trauma. The hurt/pain/loss you are feeling is intense, is real and will require time.

I’ve said it a couple of times now and if I could say this weekly I would; God loves you, I love you and you are not in this alone. Share your burdens with God, share them with close family/friends or reach out and share to our Pastoral team.

Christmas Eve is fast approaching (and so is Christmas Day), it’s going to be different this year. We are going to miss out on physical closeness with extended family and/or friends. I anticipate it’s going to be much quieter in our homes, as much as I look forward to that, I know I will miss the extra noise also. It will be a struggle to find hope and joy but you combat your negative thoughts/emotions with gratitude.

Find things you can be thankful for this Christmas. Imagine how much more difficult this would be 10, 20 or 30 short years ago when we did not have the technology we have today to connect. Use Zoom/Skype, Facebook, Instagram, personal text messages/emails or even your rotary phone (if you still have one) to deliberately reach out to people and connect with them. Share a story with them, pray together and celebrate life together, yes even in the midst of pain/loss or separation.