My dear sister,
Have you ever noticed that in the months of November and December people in general consume a lot of sweets? Sweet sugary foods are well known for the comfort and sense of pleasure they bring to those who eat them. Experts say that sugar creates a chemical reaction which washes over several areas of our brains all at once. This is why when sweet foods are eaten they often give us the same feelings as those we experience when talking with a close friend and/ or watching our favorite movie. With all of these “good time” feelings being experienced it makes it hard to stop or at the very least to slow down. We, similar to the addict of other sensor pleasing substances, are looking for and anticipating that next wave of comfort.
The end of the calendar year is also infamous for people seeking personal happiness to a greater degree. The world around us shouts: “Rejoice!” or “Joy, joy, joy!” and “Making spirits bright, laughing all the way… ho, ho, ho!” This is not only annoying on the surface level but it is gut wrenching for those who are dealing with broken relationships, pain of loss and loneliness.
When people are unhappy with life they tend to want “some happiness” so the eyes and then the hands turn toward a quick easy fix… which is usually something sweet. Ahh, the sweet rush of comfort that floods our minds so that we don’t have to think about missing someone or parenting our unruly child or being a helper and not a hinderer to our husbands etc. “Hurry”, we say to ourselves; “bring me some Figgie pudding or I shall die!” No, I don’t think it is a coincidence that all of this craving for happiness which leads us to an over consumption of sugar is especially tied to this season of the year.
It is my observation that even my brothers and sisters in Christ are prone to wander into the land of sugar plums, candy canes and sweets galore. Even when we know and proclaim that “Jesus is the reason for the season”. Somehow our hearts disengage from our minds and before we know it we too are free falling into a sugar coma on our couch as the Hallmark Christmas Movie Marathon wanes on and on and on in the background. Like everyone else we awake with an even deeper ache in our stomachs (sometimes literally and not just figuratively).
So, what to do? Certainly we can have our cake and eat it too right? The key to true comfort my dear sister is to first recognize that you are hooked on a false sense of comfort. I mean, hello who doesn’t want the real deal? The purest form of true comfort comes from knowing our Heavenly Father who happens to know all things, especially the things that bring comfort or discomfort to our souls. He not only knows all things He has created all things, including our hearts which long for comfort and peace at a time when it seems hopeless to us. He sees the bigger picture, yes, even beyond November and December each year. His perspective is eternal, it stretches from Alpha to Omega. We can trust Him to help us, to comfort us, to deliver us …
The sweetest comfort we can ever know my dear sister is already ours! He is Jesus Christ, the precious Son of God. He is our true comfort in all times and in all ways. He is our true joy! He is our true strength! Why not feed on what is true and not false? Maybe you have already overindulged in what gives you a false sense of comfort, it is never too late to put that cookie down and to embrace the true and better comfort.
My prayer for all of us as we enter into a new year is that we will finish well (all the way to next November and December) and that we will fix our eyes on the best, the sweetest, prize of all, Jesus! Unlike those cookies and candies He never grows old or stale. I will leave off with comforting words from the great comforter:
The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
I bless the LORD who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the LORD always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.
For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.
You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Your sister in Christ,