You’re not alone. Despite the hoopla around us, the holiday spirit can elude many who dread being asked to be happy when sad, to be together where relationships are strained, or to face painful memories the holidays bring up.
The church never wants to add a burden to already-burdened people. While we celebrate the season, we also want to offer you a safe and compassionate space for addressing those less-than-joyful feelings.

Last Saturday some gathered with counselor Marjorie Avent to get some help “Befriending Our Grief,” and those who attended may have some encouragement to share with those who did not. Our ministers’ doors remain open for honest conversations about grief. Caring Stephen Ministers are available, and resources are at your disposal. Please don’t suffer in silence!

Another opportunity comes on Wednesday, December 21, when we have our Longest Night Service (Sanctuary, 6:15pm), a beautiful time of bringing honest feelings before God in the presence of others who empathize.
Sometimes pain is exacerbated by the loneliness of too much self-focus. A new book called Wonder Drug: 7 Scientifically Proven Ways That Serving Others is the Best Medicine for Yourself (Trzeciak & Mazarelli) uses science to make the case for what “wise men” and wise women have known for centuries.

Maybe the best step toward that glimmer of light on the horizon would be to move toward someone who needs what you have to share. We ministers will be delivering Advent Gift Bags to those members who can no longer come to church, always a joyful, uplifting experience for us! Would you like to come along? Or go on your own?

Christ was born to bring rest for the weary, not stress. Can you receive that?

—Kyle

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