A church in our area had a Blue Christmas.service scheduled this season. The church I served as Senior Pastor until I retired has had a couple of Blue Christmas services the two years before this one.  The holiday season is tough on folks whose situation does not match the wonderful loving family scenes portrayed in movies, television programs and the feel good stories that come at this time of the year.

There is, of course, nothing wrong with all the happy endings and sentimental stories that fill the media at Christmas time.  What is wrong for some is that what they see is not what they experience, or have any realistic hope of experiencing.

This Christmas Day did not seem very celebrative.  Mary Ann admitted on the phone with our Daughter to being sad.  I guess in that sense, we had a taste of what it means to have a Blue Christmas.  Before anyone who reads this gets concerned, we had a great family Christmas celebration last Sunday.  Our visiting children had to return home a little sooner than planned to avoid being trapped by the weather.

We were alone today.  We were trapped in the house yesterday and today due to the blowing snow, providing large drifts and sometimes impassable streets.  We will probably be here tomorrow also.  I had a bowl of cereal and Mary Ann a left over half-sandwich from yesterday for lunch.  She had frozen pizza tonight and I had the last of some leftovers.  Not much of a Christmas Day celebration.  We do have lots of snacks and sweets to satisfy our need for munchies and our sweet tooth.

There was great music available on the radio, but Mary Ann’s electronic medium of choice is the television.  I listened to some meaningful (to me) worship music while she was napping.  Music does not seem to hold her interest at this point.  There was very little on television that both fit her taste and lifted our spirits.  It was mostly silliness or violence.

I can understand why the expectation of intense joy and warm feelings can make it a very tough time of the year when the reality is so far from the expectations.  Reality is not so simple.  It is far more complex than just all warmth and happiness or all struggle and pain. It is most often a measure each mixed together to produce life as it really is.  The challenge is to keep it all in perspective, enjoy the wonderful moments, deal with the not so wonderful moments, and accept the value of each in creating the history of our lives.  Our past has shaped us and our choices as they continue to come day by day form us into who we are becoming. This Blue Christmas is just one day in the journey.

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