If being quite honest, I’d tell you it’s my least favorite day of the whole year. And I figured maybe…maybe some of you may feel that way, too.
No matter how amazing Christmas Day may be, it’s possible to struggle the day after.
Maybe it’s because Christmas came and went and things didn’t go anything like you planned.
Or maybe it’s because the day was so wonderful, you’re sad to see it end.
Maybe the relationship you’ve been holding out hope for didn’t reconcile, and the fences so badly needing mended weren’t.
Maybe the diagnosis you recently received hangs heavy or the upcoming surgery date scares you to death.
Maybe the wayward child you prayed home didn’t return this holiday, or the parent who you hoped to see didn’t even call.
Maybe the unemployment check is about to run out and you’re staring at an empty bank account.
Maybe the gifts you gave weren’t cherished like you’d hoped, or the ones you most wanted weren’t given.
Maybe the Christmas miracle you keep praying for hasn’t come and you don’t understand why.
Maybe the ache of missing a loved one seems more painful and real than ever before and the thought of another day without them seems more than you can handle.
Maybe you’re heading back to a job you hate, or traveling thousands of miles back home when all you want to do is stay with your family.
Maybe the child you’ve been praying to conceive still isn’t in your empty crib or maybe watching an aging parent struggle is tearing your heart in two.
Maybe you spent this Christmas alone and you’re wondering if anyone even noticed, or maybe you spent the holiday surrounded by people yet feeling totally unseen.
Maybe the holiday was another reminder that you marriage needs work and your children seem distant.
Maybe it all just feels like too much.
Can I remind you of what the Lord just reminded me?
The message of Christmas doesn’t change just because the day in which we celebrate it has passed.
If anything, it holds even stronger.
Because Jesus came, I can face tomorrow.
And the next day. And the next. And the one after that.
Because Jesus came, my weary heart can rejoice. Not just on that one ‘oh holy night’ each year at the Christmas Eve service, but also on the nights when it’s just me sitting on my dirty kitchen floor asking the Lord why it has to be so hard.
Because Jesus came, that broken marriage, that wayward child, that scary diagnosis, that homesick young adult, the grief, the infertility, the financial struggles, the loneliness…all of it is just a place where we can watch the Lord show up, rescue, and redeem.
See, He wasn’t just a sweet little baby, He also is a conquering victorious King and that changes EVERYTHING.
The miracle, the hope, the promise of Christmas doesn’t change just because the calendar flipped to December 26th.
So this year, I’m going to rejoice.
I’m refusing to mourn the season ending because Hope has come, and Light has dawned, and I get to walk in JOY even when my circumstances may not feel happy.
I get to walk in peace when my path may feel rocky.
I get to walk in victory when it seems like all hope is lost, because Jesus CAME and that won’t ever change.
Be encouraged today, friends.
Praying for you and cheering you on.