The Holiday Season™

Today is Thanksgiving. The official start of the Holiday Season™. A season that for many is anything but festive.

Maybe you’re spending it alone. Maybe you’ve got to do things with friends and family that don’t really accept you anymore. Maybe they’ve hurt you. Maybe you’ve hurt them. Or some of both.

For me, it was the death of my grandfather right before Christmas that made it hard. He was one of my heroes. Still is. And I was stupid in how I grieved.

Or didn’t.

Because for years, I tried to avoid thinking about it at all. So all of my grief and emotions would pile up. Ignored. Unprocessed. Until it became too much.

The anniversary of his death was usually the catalyst for it to start leaking out. Even though I rarely spotted it for what it was, it made me miserable.

Far too often, I made everyone around me miserable because of it.

It’s doesn’t really matter why the Thanksgiving-Christmas season isn’t festive for you. Whatever is going on in your life, being out of sync with the mandatory mood of the season hurts.

Because it casts in stark relief our unmet needs for belonging, for intimacy, for home.

Truth be told, even if we weren’t hurting and out of sync, we would still find those needs unmet. Even if we could check all the boxes, make everyone happy, meet all of the ever-expanding expectations.

The Holiday Season™ can never really deliver on what it promises.

We might get a perfect moment. With everyone there. Maybe even a picture of it.

Thanksgiving Rockwell.png

But it’s only going to last until your [grandparent/parent/sibling/significant other/child] decides that it’s time to say something horrible. Or have a public dissection of someone’s source of greatest hurt.

When you and I decide that we want to really address all of our unmet needs for belonging, for intimacy, for home. As opposed to just having a moment that looks like it. Kind of. There’s only One place to go.

To the only One who can meet all of our needs for belonging, for intimacy, for home.

When you do, you’ll find Him waiting for you with open arms.

Today’s Readings