Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas - be thankful no matter your situation

Everyone reading this blog have a Merry Christmas. May it be a joyous time filled with love for others and hope for better things next year.

They say that around Christmas time there is more depression and suicides than any other time of the year. It is the time of year for Seasonal Affective Disorder. Each of us have things we can be thankful for and things we could be really depressed about.

I choose to be thankful for my wife. I'm thankful for owning a home rather than being homeless. The tree toppling on my house only breaking some eaves instead of splitting the house in two. Gainful employment where I make a good wage. etc. I choose to remember the joy of giving my wife a car for Christmas, of giving the grand kids and nieces presents.

If I wanted to be miserable, disappointed, and unpleasant to be around I would only have to dwell on things happening in December to be truly miserable. A week and a half ago the windstorms weekend a tree and knocked it on my house. The peripheral neuropathy in my legs has gotten worse and I am now I am using a cane. To top it off, last Friday management decided to move my job location from one where things worked well, to one where there it will be more difficult to do my job, where I will have to carpool just to be able to park, and where I will loose $300-$400 per month due to state income tax.

Why go there? Why make myself so unhappy?

It is true that delighting myself with the things that have gone right will not make the bad things go away, but it is equally true that the bad things do not negate the good things unless I let them. I have to make a conscious choice every day (sometimes every hour) to look at the good things in life and not the bad things.

If I didn't have my faith in the saving work of Jesus Christ, this could certainly be a miserable time of year, and a miserable life as well. I chose to try to be thankful all year round and not dwell on the bad of this year or years past. We have to look at the good things and not the bad. This time of year is when I have a tendency to get sick for some reason. However, I chose not to dwell on the worsening neuropathy (and using a cane) this Christmas, getting neuropathy and having to quit pastoring a church last fall, and getting a really bad case of pneumonia one of the previous years.

My hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ and not in my circumstances. Merry Christmas.

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