Missing Someone this Christmas? What to Do with Those Painful Memories

Everywhere you turn you see
them—especially during the Christmas season…

  • in the smile of a child
  • in the melody of a song
  • in that hanging ornament
  • in the smell of a Balsam fir
  • in that special Christmas treat that used to be their favorite
  • around the Christmas dinner table
  • in that family tradition of….

You can’t get away from these painful memories. All are sad reminders of what you don’t have anymore; of the one you don’t have anymore. What you would give to have that person back again!

No wonder so many are depressed this time of year. Whether through death, divorce, distance or family discord being separated from that special person is tough. Christmas for many is not the most wonderful time of year.

At other times of the year, it is easier to put those memories aside or at least not have them overwhelm you. But during the holidays, they are ever before you; escape—an impossibility. Although some may try through alcohol, drugs, or shopping. But the pain is still there after the distraction is gone. At best it is a fleeting relief.

What’s a child of the King supposed to do?!
What would God have you and I to do with those painful memories?

God’s not asking you and me to pretend we’re not hurting anymore. Even if it has been many years since we’ve lost that special someone (it’s been over 12 for me). If you love someone you will always have an aching emptiness for them this side of heaven. I will miss my man till the day I die and we are reunited.

This may sound silly to some of you, but the day after I lost my husband, Ed, and the pain was about to swallow me up, I recognized it was supposed to hurt this bad—it was simply an indication of how much I truly loved him. That realization helped me to genuinely grieve. My love for my soulmate has not diminished. Nor has your love for that child, brother, parent, or friend.

It’s ok to grieve!

I don’t believe Father God wants us to get rid of our memories or to stop thinking about the special people in our lives, but to see them through the lens of His redeeming love.

He wants to give us new and wonderful memories!

New ones upon which to focus our eyes and minds. Like:

  • the kindness of a friend who makes sure you’re not alone on Christmas.
  • the laughter around the dinner table of those that are still here.
  • that special sense of Jesus’s presence reminding you that you are not alone.
  • the warmth of the Christmas story and its true meaning as you sing carols at a nursing home with your church family.

Allow the gift of tears—your emotional release—to flow even on Christmas. Go into your heavenly Father’s arms and receive His comfort. Let Him help you face the pain, not avoid it. The healing of your soul can then take place. Then don’t isolate yourself and hide your tears from others. How else can they carry out the mandate of loving others—of loving you? How else can they help you carry your burden of pain (Gal 6:2)?

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles. (2 Cor 1:3-4)

Until next time, my friends, enjoy your Christmas celebration as you…

Make new and wonderful memories!

Merry Christmas!

Helpful Resources
Blog series: How to Deal with Pain God’s Way

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