This may seem like an odd topic for an author who promises to inspire, but bear with me.
For better or worse, the Christmas holiday, along with Hanukah and Kwanzaa, are tied with the fading of the light in the Northern Hemisphere. I, along with others who need sunlight in their lives, experience a profound loss of joy with the shortened days. Add to that, the second year of a pandemic, the violent weather events occurring as global warming changes our planet, and economic weirdness, (By traditional economic figures, the economy is improving, so why doesn’t it feel that way?) and many people are experiencing some level of depression.
Christmas doesn’t quite feel like Christmas this year, in spite of a panoply of tinny Christmas songs emanating from your local Walmart.
One song seems to express the angst many are feeling right now: Where Are You Christmas?” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1qXL1cEgi4
The song seems to indicate that finding the spirit of Christmas (or whatever light you turn to in the darkness of the year) is an inside job. The tinsel, glitter, presents, and even family gatherings aren’t going to do it for you, especially if you aren’t truly present yourself.
In my case, I will need to draw on unfamiliar resources. I am in a small trailer, my Christmas tree and boxes of ornaments from my parents and a lifetime of gathering from around the globe, are in Montana. I’m in Georgia, which is proving to be a very different place from anywhere I’ve spent significant time. My instinct is to crawl under the covers.
Instead, I must look outward. Nature is all around me, even if I don’t recognize the tall pines or abundance of egrets. Reaching into the faith tradition of my choice, I find some lines from Luke, “…the dawn from on high will break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” The dawn will break each day. It’s my job to look up to see it.
I wish you all the blessings of the season, whatever path you may be on, whatever traditions you follow. May you find the light to keep you going in whatever darkness you may be experiencing.
And, no matter who or where you are, may you be showered with an abundance of love.