by Annette Bridges. © 2007. All rights reserved.
I asked some friends to join me in writing a Christmas love note to you. Whether you’re surrounded by family or alone this Christmas, we hope you know you’re never completely alone, because your Father-Mother God is ever by your side — ready to help, guide and give you strength, support and wisdom. He has an endless supply of healing balm for wounded and weary hearts. And you, my friends, are so very loved and precious in His sight.
Perhaps you’re feeling like Charlie Brown when he lamented, “I just don’t understand Christmas. Instead of feeling happy, I feel sort of let down.”
We don’t know why Charlie Brown had these feelings. He might have lost a parent or had a friend who moved far away or maybe a brother deployed overseas or perhaps he was snubbed once again by the little redheaded girl. Like Charlie Brown, some people find the holiday season to be a difficult time — one of sadness and loneliness, self-evaluation and reflection about the past, or anxiety about the future.
For someone grieving over a loss or struggling with memories of holidays past and loved ones no longer present, Christmas may not feel very merry. A dear friend of mine emailed me recently to say her precious mother had passed on. And I’m trying to find some words of comfort to share when I call her.
Mostly, I want her to know how much I love and cherish her friendship, and I want to tell her I’m here if she needs me in any way. I hope she and everyone will find some encouraging and strengthening words in the love notes that follow:
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Christmas is so much more than a time, word, gift or season … it’s a power. And it’s found right where you are — this moment. Christmas blooms as we step aside and let Love shine. Love’s light is here for all of us. Feel it, dear heart. Feel it in quiet, and find it in loving.
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This Christmas all three of my daughters will be with their birth mothers. You may think this would leave me feeling sad or empty, but it is the greatest gift that anyone could have given me. It means that I have learned to let go and have taught my daughters how to love expansively. Each of their birth mothers is a young woman I believe in and am so grateful to. Each of them gave me the greatest gifts of my life — my daughters to love and cherish. Sharing them this Christmas is a special joy. May each of your readers find joy in expanding their definition of family through the spirit of adoption.
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The holidays are a time of great joy — and sometimes of a sweet sadness, too, for those who have transitioned on. I’m grateful for all the feelings, because that’s what makes us feel truly alive.
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The thing I realize most about Christmas is that it isn’t once a year — it’s every day. Every day has opportunities for giving and receiving, loving and cherishing. I try to open my consciousness to receive the Christ and see the Christ in everyone I meet. Sure, the annual celebration is a huge event, and sometimes it seems too much, but celebrating it each day helps us cancel out the overwhelmingness of it all. And each day you receive a present — God’s love.
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Our family celebration has changed over the years as our children have started their own families and traditions. For the past five or so years, John and I have invited our friends or friends of friends who have no family in the area, or who are single or alone for one reason or another, to spend Christmas with us. We call it our Christmas of giving. We have had anywhere from one to five or six people sitting down with us on Christmas Day. John and I love this holiday tradition as much as our friends do.
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“Christmas Love” is an everlasting love. It’s really with us every day as we shine forth God’s Love. You will see it and feel it around you. Your loved ones become nearer and dearer than ever, as you see the glory of God expressed in simple ways, even with the sunrise. The love of the Christ is loving you, and you are basking in that Christly Love as you watch Christmas candles and lights glow. So let the Christ light shine through you, dear one. Nothing can stop the Christ from lighting the way for you.
With Christly Love,
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I heard someone mention that when we need healing, we can place our thought in the manger of Christ. There we find Joseph’s strength and protection, Mary’s love and peace, and the Christ’s promise of healing and salvation for all. So this message of love is for all mankind to feel that peaceful and blessed place.
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All of these tender messages remind me that friends are one of the greatest of God’s gifts to his children. We may have never met before, but we are friends embraced together by a loving and caring God.
Imagine a world where we know that we are all friends, and we treat each other as such — with love, with peace and with good will.
Merry Christmas, friend!