‘It’s not wonderful for all, but it can be’

Published 5:09 pm Thursday, December 16, 2021

I find it ironic that we call the Christmas Season “the most wonderful time of the year.” As Christians we generally sign on to this tag line due to the celebration and remembrance of Christ’s birth. For many children it is due to the lights, the gifts, the decorations and the mystery of Santa. For many adults, saved or otherwise, it is simply a time for parties, gatherings and festivities. I say it’s ironic because there is a whole other group of folks out there that find no joy in any fashion during these times and are often forgotten about.

The holidays can hit many folks who suffer from depression with a new overwhelming sadness. For the addict it can be a struggle to go through the parties, stress and finances that Christmas brings with it without relapsing. For those who have lost loved ones, Thanksgiving and Christmas can serve as reminders of who they have lost and bring with them the sting of grief.

When others are laughing, singing and celebrating, these folks I have mentioned may be struggling to find any reason to smile and “keep up a good front.”

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They can have joy though. All people in all groups regardless of social status, being in the wake of grief, being elated for the season, being overjoyed by the Christmas spirit, or stepping up their support groups, can have joy. They can have peace.

If each person will take the time to embrace the promises of Christ and remember “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”-Isaiah 9”6.

The fulfillment of the hopes and fears of all the years came to fruition when that child arrived. His life, ministry, death and resurrection, all fulfilled the promise of Jesus as messiah. We have salvation and if we have accepted Christ we have the promise of eternal peace, joy and comfort.

That is the message that many have accepted, yet have allowed this world to dampen. The message that many have not received and may be in need of receiving.

This season, take the time to give the gift of Christ to another person. Reach out to that friend or loved one you know is struggling and offer them relief, refuge and hope. Ground yourself in the good news of Christ and let that be your focus this holiday season.

This world is brief and all things will come to pass. The depression, grief, addiction, the struggle, is only for now. One day at a time. In eternity there is none of the above. Take joy in that knowledge and lean on Christ each day until that eternity comes. Believe it, remember it and share it with others.

REV. BARRY VASSAR is pastor at Fitzgerald Memorial Baptist. He can be reached at fitzgeraldmemorial@gmail.com.