Just days before Christmas seems like a strange time to be writing about sorrow, but for many, Christmas is a time of great sorrow. It is a very difficult season for people dealing with a loss; whether from a death of a loved one, stressed relationships, financial difficulties, or poor health. It magnifies your loss when you see the world celebrating and frolicking... spreading good cheer and singing "Joy to the World"... because you don't feel that same sense of happiness.

We all have known the pain of sorrow. Whether from a loss or a deep rooted melancholy, the pain is just as real. It doesn't make your pain any less because someone else has a perceived greater loss. Nor does the fact that you are a Christian remove the pain. In Romans Paul refers to his own sorrow over the unfaithfulness of Israel “My conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit—that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart" (Romans 9:1).

I also, have known my share of life's sorrows. My father died from organ failure after having his body completely burned in a power plant accident when I was young. I will never forget the sound of the explosion or the shaking of the ground. Being the youngest, I was the only one home during this traumatic event. I will never forget walking into the emergency room and seeing that horrendous sight. Our family was never the same afterward.

I was recently going through old Christmas photos and realized we stopped celebrating Christmas in our home after my father died. Sometimes we would go to one of my sister's house, sometimes I would go with a friend, but it was never the same after his death. Years later, I was the one who took care of my mother in my home as she was dying of cancer. I was also taking care of three small children, many visiting relatives, and dealing with chronic illness. It took me months to have time to grieve her loss, since I was the one responsible for taking care of everything.

Again years later, after the strain of living with a chronic illness made me barely functional. My husband walked out stating "you are going to end up in a wheelchair and I don't want to take care of you." I was left without home, finances, or insurance and no way to provide them, but God was faithful. Shortly after he left, my friends took me to a Joyce Meyer conference. In the middle of her message God spoke to her to call forward those whose husbands had just left them and tell them that "God will provide for them." Not only did she pray for me, but my friends said I was the only one she blew her anointing on. God has provided and given me hope.

Being a Christian in the midst of sorrow doesn't take away the pain, but it does give us hope. Hope that we will be reunited with our loved ones. Hope “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4). Hope in the joy of our salvation. "We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope” (1 Thessalonians 4:13).

"Remember the word to Your servant, upon which You have caused me to hope. This is my comfort in my affliction, for Your word has given me life" (Psalm 119:49-50). I have learned that through Christ there is comfort in my afflictions... that God's word gives me life... that the depth of my sorrow is the level of the joy that God will fill the void. True joy doesn't mean happy which is based upon what it happening in our life. True joy comes from the Holy Spirit. True joy comes from knowing our name is written in the lambs book of life. That our sins are forgiven and that we are loved by a heavenly father who loved us so much he sacrificed his only son.

So, this Christmas season, as we celebrate the birth of God's son, Jesus, the Christ. I pray that your hearts will be filled with joy...the true joy of Christmas.

6 Response to "Sorrow"

  1. Anonymous Says:
    December 21, 2010 at 11:50 AM

    I thank you for posting this. For as many holidays,especially Christmas,that I can remember,it is such a sad time for me. I used to wonder what was wrong with me. I read there are more suicides at Christmas than at any other time,so I know it isn't. I appreciate all you said,and I do thank you. Wanda

  2. Preston Pittman says:
    December 21, 2010 at 8:21 PM

    Mmmm... Brenda. Praise God, you must write when you can... we need to hear what's in your heart for God. This cuts to the heart of many of us. I know such pain... you've read this poem before, but I think it is so appropriate here. Let me share and then I'll finish my thought about this blog.

    There is a side of love that must be shown.
    The side that leaves with us a silent moan.

    We should not hide this love so deep.
    The side I mean that makes us weep.

    For what is love so sweet and nice.
    That we could give without sacrifice.

    Of course the love that's from the heart,
    is meant for joy right from the start.

    But woven deep within it's passion,
    a blood was poured into it's fashion.

    This side of love we give is not for loss...
    It's rooted in and from the cross.

    By: Preston Pittman "This Side Of Love"
    I love you

    We are about to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior... and don't you know that while He was born, God and all of heaven were celebrating... but there was also a great burden that night too. The Cross... the most terrible thing to endure... but the very purpose of His coming... the eternal focus even before His coming that weighed upon God's heart. Mmmm... I think we can afford both expressions this Christmas and bless our Father!

    You have touched our hearts tonight with your writing, and I know it caused you much pain, but oh, do I know God is happy right now. Wow. I love you.

  3. Joyce Graham says:
    April 17, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    Brenda, can see you have and are suffered a lot. Earlier today i was praying for you, and will keep on. You are a blessing to me. Wow, i know it was meant for me to finally find Journey of the heart today! i am sitting here crying my eyes out, but I need that at times. My husband died 12-23-10 after being in horrific pain for 7 years, and me taking care of him totally last year and a lot before then. Christmas, to say the least was most sad this time. My children and I got to watch him take his last breath and it was so spiritual! He was glowing and was seeing angels around him! Glad he is with the Lord out of suffering but miss him. In so many ways down here, we do all endure an awful lot. Love Rev. 21:4 you quoted, and love you sis!

  4. Brenda Dawson says:
    April 18, 2011 at 6:37 AM

    Joyce, Thank you for your prayers and encouragement. I have been going through a difficult season and you have really lifted me up to get back to writing.

    Yes, a good cry is therapeutic at times. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your husband, but what a beautiful testimony. I understand the conflict of rejoicing they are with the Lord, but still wishing they were with you.

    I hate to sound cliché, but time and prayer do heal the pain... and having a circle of friends who keep you in prayer. I will be remembering you as well, sweet Joyce.

    Praying God will wrap you in His loving arms, comfort you, bind your wounds, and heal you heart. God bless you my sweet sister in Christ! Sending lots of hugs, love, & prayers!

    Glad you finally found my blogs.

  5. Joyce Graham says:
    April 21, 2011 at 7:47 PM

    Wow, our God is so good! Just rambling around your and Preston's blogs trying to decide where to read next, and found your comment tonight, and you lifted me up so much, telling me you were praying for me as well.

    Been having a meltdown tonight, looking through Jim's box of memorabilia. I am alright most of the time, but some times the grieving just has to come out.

    I have just wrote a blog about my dad dying in my arms, my daughter the same, and real soon feel to do the one about Jim's passing.

    You know out of all of our pain, if we can bring the sweet aroma of Christ to others, by our yielding our will, it is worth it all!!!

    Brenda you are such a beautiful person, and an encouragement to me. I receive your blessing and pray a doublefold one over you sis!

    Love you. Hugs! (If this is too long, I understand you not posting it.)

  6. Joyce Graham says:
    April 23, 2011 at 11:35 AM

    Hang in there sis! You are loved, respected and needed more than you know. You have touched my life, and we have never even met. I love you and am praying for you!

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