02 December 2019
Carrying Christmas in my Heart ~ Inclusion
Happy Christmas Dear Reader,
I think that this is the hard part of the holidays. It is also an area where I have had to review and alter my thinking. We all have people in our lives that we wish to avoid, forget, or ignore. The difficulty is that if we are going to deal with everyone in love and grace that we have to address this carefully.
There are family members who bring more pain and anxiety to the party than anything else. We cannot fix them and it is not our obligation to do so. What we can do is rise above the issues and show the love of Christ that is necessary for the Christmas season even to exist.
We consider our hurts and the other person's failures when we choose how to measure out our love for others. Arguments concerning the unique nature of this or that relative’s toxicity rise to the surface to justify our withholding of love. Love has the power to include others and protect us from those who act with venom or unkindness.
The obligation to show love is ours no matter what anyone else does. What if Christ only considered our toxicity when choosing how to deal with us? We are all toxic compared to Christ and were he to see us as rejectable and unworthy of love, there would be no Advent, incarnation, or Christmas. We are supposed to see everyone as he sees them. Everyone is worthy of our love.
This is painful for me to write. There are those in my life that I must show love and, in the past, have excluded because of the pain it causes me. I was wrong to exclude them. I withheld love when it is not in my purview to do so.
Silence is a form of exclusion. No response is always a negative response. Refusing to interact in love with family only generates pain. The act of exclusion by intent is a passive-aggressive attack that cannot be in line with the responsibility to love, forgive, and give to others. We may have to temper and reach out judiciously. We cannot be silent and claim to be loving.
I know that this is hard for some of you to read Dear Reader. I assure you that I am walking this path with you. I will continue to reach out in love to family that hurt me at every exchange. I cannot claim to love you if I am unwilling to love them. More so, I cannot claim to follow Christ or carry Christmas in my heart if I do not share that love with others.
Wishing you joy in the journey,
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a homeowner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”
(͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
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