Christmas Can Remind Us

By Gina Sternfels

Preparing for Christmas and hearing Christmas carols playing reminds me of Christmas Eve as a little girl all dressed up in the back seat of my dad’s car. I was squished between my brother and sister, listening to the Christmas carols playing as we headed to a family party followed by Midnight Mass.

I knew that moment was special when it was happening. Looking out the windows, I could see the lights decorating houses, especially in the giant oak trees we passed on the road. It made it almost magical. The ride in darkness lit up by Christmas colors shining brightly with the stars and moon in the sky.  It was a ride of anticipation.

Reflecting on this memory as we prepare for the third Christmas after my mom has passed is emotional and healing for the first time. When I sit in my emotions with tears streaming down my face, I feel and know how loved I am.  No matter what I deal with in the chaos of a busy life, if I can sit still and visit this treasured memory, I am reminded that this is evidence of great love.

I was blessed by my mom when I had her here with me, and still, in this memory. It is the love I want to remember. Accepting the pain of her death, it may bring us to the love being so grand.

As much as I do not want my children ever to be hurt, I know I want them to undeniably know their God-given identity. It is the love that our Father has for each of us through the birth of his son.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life” John 3:16.

Yes, you are loved that much.

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