Unpacking the Gift of Reality, “I’m not ok.”

Christmas is a time of wonder, excitement, anticipation, beauty…… and stress.

This year particularly.  We’ve all had our share of curveballs, cancellations, and complications.  Tired of a dragged-out pandemic.

Often we give gifts.  Including gifts of our time, our talents, ourselves, our homes, whatever.

What about giving the gift of sharing with those close to you, your real feelings, your reality…

“I’m not ok.”

Because sometimes we’re not.

We put on a front and may appear fine, but inside we’re not.  And we don’t even always know why. And that’s ok. But don’t keep it to yourself. Give the gift of your reality and share it with someone close to you. And take it to God, maybe even through others. He is bigger than any of our problems.

I’ve had this. Sometimes it feels like a dark cloud hanging over…not always explainable. But asking a friend or two to pray for me, shared the load. And when it lifted, I knew it was God.

Be patient. He will sustain us.

We have the unchanging, immovable Saviour and Rock, our Lord Jesus Christ, on whom we can rely! The One remembered at Christmas, who came as Immanuel, God in the flesh. He came to redeem us, and reconcile our relationship with God. So we can bring our challenges to Him. Jesus intercedes for us before His Father — now our Father — and pleads on our behalf. When we are in pain, He feels it, He has experienced it… having been on earth Himself, going all the way to the cross – for us!

Imagine that, Jesus born… to die… for you and me.

He was born into this world, lived, died, rose again, ascended on high, and will come again… all for those who believe in Him. When we’re not ok, He hears. He will make things right. He understands. He will bring us through. Even if for now, we have to suffer for a little while.

Jesus never said it would be easy, but He did say He’d never leave us. He abides in us with His Holy Spirit as a deposit guaranteeing an eternal inheritance to come.

His promise is this eternal inheritance for us… so He’ll make good on that seeing as He’s given the deposit. And when He comes back, He will make ALL things new.

So when we’re having a bad day (or more) where we’re not ok, lean into these eternal promises that God will carry us through to greater things.

And lean into the grace He extends even now in giving others around us who care.

Here are some questions that might help you process your reality with those close to you this Christmas:

  • What are you most excited about these days? (joys)
  • What are you most concerned about? (worries)
  • What’s something, one thing, you consider to be a gift from God in 2020? (gratitude)
  • What about the incarnation grips you on a personal level? (wonder)
  • How do you think our relationship is doing? (current reality)
  • What can I do to love you better? (growth)

And then thank God for the gift of each other and being able to share our reality, in the wonder of this Christmas season, regardless of circumstances.

Questions sourced from FamilyLife Canada material.

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