Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on Dec 20, 2012 | Comments (0)

Christmas Bottom Line Spirituality: Worldly and Godly Thinking

Click here to go to the Bottom Line Meditations for Christmas

Godly Abiding Spiritually in Jesus Changes the Meaning of What we See Worldly When Not Abiding in Jesus.

The theme for the Christmas Season is to recognize how our Worldly thought outside of the Presence can create negative feelings and how the Godly feeling in the Presence can create positive thoughts in the same situation.

Luke 2:41-52 "His mother treasured all these things in her heart."

Now comes the Sunday after Christmas. Many are still celebrating and looking toward the New Year. Yet, there are others who find Christmas too painful with nothing to celebrate and too hard to find joy.

The tragedy at Newtown will always be a painful memory. The question asked is, “Where was God?” We think of God as Loving, Almighty and all Knowing. He knew this was to happen so why did He not intervene? The answer is to face the fact that we are in a spiritual war between good and evil. An emotional Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy got it right when he said that Evil visited the Village of Newtown. It might be a hard thing to say, but the deaths were the collateral damage in the war against evil.

Jesus told the story of a king who went to battle with ten thousand troops. He found out the other king had twenty thousand and he sued for peace. The point is, you do not get into a war if you have not counted the cost. God who is Almighty, Loving and all Wise knows there will be battles He will lose but also that He will win the war. He has counted the cost. Satan is too dumb to count the cost.

The tragedy at Newtown is a memory many will find difficult, if not impossible, to deal with. It will be most difficult when future Christmas’s come. Dealing with past Christmas’s in the present time can bring pain for many others as well.

To be sure, the healing of this pain takes time. However, time itself does not heal anything. What we do with our memory takes time. One thing that can be done is to find a corner in our home where we can put the letters, pictures and other signs of the past. Each day, take fifteen to twenty minutes working through grief. If it is a grief in the family, it needs to be done together. Time needs to be spent going through the grief thoughts of the event. When there are certain past times as birthdays and other memories, we need to start dealing with them ahead of time. Start the above discipline at least a month ahead so that the impact isn’t so intensely concentrated on the anniversary of the event. With Christmas, you could start playing carols two or three months before it comes to give the discipline time to work.

You will find that there will be times of more pain than others. The mood we are in will affect the grief that is felt. There will be good days and bad days. Have a candle in your quiet place. Light it on good days and don’t on the bad days. The realization will eventually come that it is the way we think about the event that is the cause of the grief. Otherwise, the pain would be the same all of the time.

Until this truth is realized, one will always be the victim of the evil that was done and who did it. There will come a time when it will be possible, just possible, to consciously feel the Peace and Love of God. As long as we blame the event, there will be no closure. Closure comes when we realize it would be possible to be in God’s Peace Presence, not about the event, but in the event.

The purpose of this discipline is to help keep us from getting blindsided when we least expect it to hit us. It will take time, but gradually it will lessen how often it is needed. There will come a time when these memories can be celebrated and we do not lose them. As with Mary, we can keep the gratitude for the life we shared in our heart.

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