Empty Seats

Many are facing some melancholy this season as they look around festive tables to see seats empty. Many have lost a spouse, parent, child, brother, sister, or other loved one over the last year or two. Since this may be the first time gathering since 2019, this season may serve up a significant punch to the stomach as those that gather notice those that are no longer able to do so.

For some, the melancholy might come from a diagnosis, a job loss, or some other kind of loss, rejection, or disappointment.

I’m carrying a number of friends in my heart who lost or are in the process of losing a father, sister, or grandparent. My heart hurts for them as they grieve and try to navigate the waves of grief. If you carry someone in your heart facing pain and loss this season, say a prayer for them. Offer them a compassionate word, letting them know that it’s okay to not be okay.

The Only Way to Whole is Through the Pain

If you have faced the pain of loss and are pursuing healing and seeking to be whole, then you know that numbing the pain or trying to escape it through distractions of one kind or another just don’t work. The only way to whole is through the pain.

Grief Comes in Waves

I’ve come to realize grief comes in waves. We aren’t always sure when the breaker is going to hit. When it does, if we allow ourselves to feel the pain and grieve it, then we can truly heal. We can taste the robust flavors of joy when it comes if we allow ourselves to feel real pain without dismissing it, numbing it, escaping it, or letting it cross over to an addiction of its own (for even grief can turn into an addiction to self-pity or bitterness if we allow it to).

How Do Just Be

I’ve had marked times when all around me was festivity but inside I felt anything but. If that’s you, please give yourself permission to just be.

  • To be yourself- grief and all
  • To be in Christ- walking with Him through whatever you are facing, knowing He walks with or carries you- whatever you need.
  • To be thankful for what is- letting go of expectations for what you think you or your situation should be

If you know those hurting, welcome them as they are, giving them permission to just be.

Still Wondering

If you’re still pondering this topic, you might be interested in this article: When Merry isn’t Possible. It’s a good read if you aren’t somber yourself, but know someone who is. If you like these, you might also like:

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Copyright ©  2021 Angela Edmonds. All rights reserved.

Photo Credit: Photo edited from photo by Artsy Vibes on Unsplash

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