Vessel Project Featured Authors Guest Post for Christmas
Enjoy this encouraging Christmas prayer and guest post from Vessel Project featured author, Carol Stratton, author of Lake Surrender and Changing Zip Codes – Finding community wherever you’re transplanted.
Christmas hits a newcomer hard when roots are shallow and a new community is cold. When Christmastime comes, you find yourself saying “If only my family was here, then I could enter into the holidays with joy.”
I remember the same sadness when my husband and I lived in Wheaton, Illinois. My husband was unemployed and we had been trying for months to sell our house.
My husband and I have four grown children. All our children lived across the country in several states. That Christmas, we found ourselves without our four children or our parents or siblings or aunts, uncles, or even in-laws to drop by or visit or join in holiday festivities.
Why not just have hamburgers for Christmas dinner?
Why even put up a tree?
I poured out my heart to God and He heard my sadness. He sent my daughter and her new fiancé up from North Carolina to join us for Christmas. And, my husband’s niece and her husband made the huge trek from Tulsa, Oklahoma to Wheaton, Illinois. I pondered all this during that special Christmastime. I thought I was disconnected that Christmas but I never really was.
Is your house empty this Christmas? Join me in a prayer for those of us who feel disconnected this Christmas.
Lord of all comfort, spread you blanket of solace over all of us who find themselves in a new community.
Help us to remember one of your names is Immanuel…which means God is with us.
Let each one struggling with loneliness and a sense of alienation, feel Your presence and know You have already arrived at their new address.
You are there to welcome all, just as you did as a small baby on that first Christmas.
Encourage each one reading this that even when family is miles away, you are our Father and our first family when we belong to you.
Jesus himself was a newcomer, a temporary visitor to earth. He never had a home so He understands as much as anyone what it is to feel disconnected. When we open our heart to Him, He becomes a real presence in our life.
I know this because I‘ve known Him for forty years. It’s the reason I’ve survived and even thrived during all my many relocations. I’ve often felt as though I was the only one in the company of the disconnected but I never really was.