Christmas Tears

Update:  Randomly-Chosen Winner of the Salt & Pepper Shakers is Linda Rainey! Linda, please use the contact page to send me your street address, or message me on Facebook with the info! Thanks for reading and commenting, everyone–you really cheered me up!

 Have you cried yet this Christmas week?

I have. My yearly Christmas meltdown took me by surprise in church this morning.

The children’s choirs sang first, adorable in their imperfection, energy, and joy. I was laughing along with everyone else at the kid who screamed out the one word he knew in each chorus and the girl who waved frantically at her family…and then suddenly I flashed back to Christmases when my own daughter was small. She, too, participated in the children’s choir and sang in front of the church; she too was adorable, full of uncomplicated joy.

brownies holiday parade 09And that time is past. While I feel blessed to be raising an intelligent, funny, confident teenager, I know I’ll never have those new mom moments of pride and delight again.

The totally-unexpected tearjerker was “Angels We Have Heard on High.” In the early days of my marriage, my husband and I usually attended Christmas Eve services at a Florida church near my mother’s home. He wasn’t a singer, but he always warbled the drawn-out “glo-o-o-o-o-o-ria” of the chorus in a comical way. We had fun together when visiting Mom at Christmas. In a marriage that didn’t have a lot of shared smiles and togetherness, those were sweet moments.

And that time is past. I’m over my divorce and I’ve mostly recovered from the death of my mother, but clearly, a part of me misses those days. I miss the person I was then—someone less aware of the potential loss that underlies every relationship, someone more lighthearted and naïve.

So, yeah, I was wiping tears in church. I wasn’t the only one. Christmas brings up the memories for all of us, and if we’ve lived a while, some of those memories are bittersweet. After church I shared Christmas hugs with one friend who recently lost her husband and another who’s struggling with a degenerative disease. There aren’t many of us with perfect lives.

 But like my pastor’s been emphasizing these past few weeks, Christmas isn’t about having a perfect day or a perfect season; Christmas isn’t what you see pinned on Pinterest. It’s about Christ, who came to fill a need in the world, to save us from our sins and ourselves. Tears and sadness can draw us closer to the Christ who promised never to leave or forsake us.

To anyone reading this, whether happy or sad at holiday time, here’s a Christmas wish from Romans 15:13: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. 

AChristmasBond72-4If you’re blue and need a distraction this Christmas season, check out my short novella, A Christmas Bond, for only 99 cents. Annie, the heroine, has the Christmas blues . . . but she gets over them in a totally unexpected way. Sign up for my newsletter for a sneak peek of the first chapter, coming on Christmas Eve, and for news about more uplifting, comforting Christian romance stories. And have as merry as possible of a Christmas!




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13 Comments on "Christmas Tears"

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Patricia Johns

Christmas is definitely an emotional time of year! I’m sorry for your sadness. But you’re right. We put the focus on family at Christmas, but really the focus should be Jesus. Family isn’t ENOUGH to fill Christmas. May this holiday be a sweet one.

Stephanie Splater

Thank you for this beautiful post, Lee! You have a wonderful spirit and I appreciate having met you a few times at SHU, (class of ’09). Just purchased the novella and looking forward to reading it! :)

Ann Ellison
I had a touch of that in the Candlelight Service at my church tonight. It’s the church I grew up in and my sister goes there. But as I was sitting in the service watching some others that were there as families, I couldn’t help but feel a little lonely. My children are grown and married and I lost my husband several years ago. I couldn’t help thinking about how long it had been since I had sat with my family in a service. It was a sweet service and those feelings didn’t ruin everything, I do have a precious… Read more »
Elizabeth Lopez

The holidays can be difficult. My husband went home to the Father over 30 years ago, and I still miss him. I eased my kids on my own with His help — they were 3 and 7. I don’t know how people do the job without a church family; mine certainly helped me. God always manages to remind me of His constant companionship. One of my favorite Scriptures is “beauty from ashes.” He is truly my Christmas present.

Diana Lynn Montgomery

I have cried many tears and more in this last week in awhile Loss of my father has changed how I am at Christmas, just doesn’t seem same with out him. Now this morning a dear friend has died and his wife is also dying anytime now. This is really a time of tears. I know God knows every tear we shed. Without Him we have no hope. I know the loved ones are with Him right now. In that there is hope and a peace. I hope you have a Merry Christmas!!

Diana Lynn Montgomery

I forgot I did read your newsletter I enjoyed it and I do have Christmas Bond. God Bless

Linda Rainey

I read in your newsletter,you want us to comment here.
To me, Christmas is more a time to give than receive.
Merry Christmas and I have the honor to read and review all the Bonds.

Robin Bunting

wow Sorry for your sadness of things past. Glad you are where you are now. Thank you for sharing. Merry Christmas. Good blog. Read all the Bonds and looking forward to the next series.

Avis Cooper

I have read a few of your books and thoroughly enjoy them. Thanks for writing “from your heart”. Merry Christmas.

Elizabeth Lopez

I’m borrowing that last paragraph and posting it with credit to you on FB. I’m not the only one who needs reminding. Thank you, Lee.