Recently I read this post on facebook—”It’s important to remember that not everyone is surrounded by large wonderful families. Some of us have problems during the holidays and sometimes are overcome with great sadness when we remember the loved ones who are not with us. And, many people have no one to spend these times with and are besieged by loneliness. We all need caring thoughts and loving prayer right now.”
It is a good reminder— there are people who need our prayers, support and friendship. Those who have family problems, health struggles, job issues, worries of all kinds. It is always good to know that someone cares and understands. Whenever possible, reach out to those who would benefit from an invitation to dinner, or some other activity.
Every family situation is different. Some family members and friends may not even enjoy a gathering and prefer alone time — but it is important they know they are remembered and included especially around the holidays. We have all felt to some degree rejection and have been offended at times. None of us are perfect and none of us have perfect families or friends. This is the season to forgive one another.
One of my most memorable Thanksgiving’s is when I missed our extended family dinner to serve with my son at the homeless shelter. It was Christopher’s idea and I went along with it because I wanted to be supportive of his noble idea. It turned out to be a very good experience for both of us.
Nobody is immune to hardships, loneliness and grief. Let’s reach out to those around us. As we do so, our own burdens will be lightened. As we focus on giving service and sharing with others, our love and blessings grow. When we appreciate what we do have, the things we don’t become less important.