Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A Decembered Grief

Grief is all around us. Right now it is in our national news. And for many of us, it is in our neighborhoods, churches and our own homes. 

December is a month of celebration and joy. It is a difficult time for those whose grief is fresh and raw. I remember well how hard we tried to have a normal Christmas, when we had just buried our mom and nephew. 

My dear friend, faced this same dilema when she was raising three small boys alone, after her husband was killed in a plane accident. She found Harold Smith's book A Decembered Grief: Living with loss while other are Celebrating, to be a good guide to help her process and intentionally plan that first Christmas.

Every December, I read some of Harold's words and pray for my friends who are grieving:

"After experiencing grief, loss and death, I have come to believe in a Christmas that cannot be limited to 24 hours on the 25th of December. I have come to believe in a future Christmas when all God's children will be home. I have come to believe that in our first moments in heaven we will realize how much He (Jesus Christ) gave up to spend those years among us,  to invite us to spend forever with Him. I believe that His coming locked this world into a loving embrace and that this December season, He will be as close as our grief allows."

We cannot fully enter into the grief of others, but we can do small things that make a difference. Today, ask the Lord to give you His ideas for ways to lighten the load of those that are grieving in your spheres of influence.

Linking up with sweet Jen
Linking up with another sweet Jen 


  1. Thanks Glenda, very useful book... for everyone!

  2. Great recommendation here... have several dear friends who could use this book as they face the holidays this year. Blessings, Glenda!

  3. Oh, I love how you write...always full of truth,but with kindness and sensitivity. Thank you for sharing that book. I will have to purchase it as I know grief is not done with me yet and it would be great read for others facing similar struggles. Love ya Glenda!

  4. Such a timely book! So hard when this season is filled with grief, hardships, & sadness for so many! Praying many will see this resource & find comfort through it's pages! Thanks friend for linking with UNITE today! Held by grace, Jen

  5. Again, you are amazing with how you encourage us. Thank you, Glenda, for being so wonderful. Every time I come here, I feel as though I receive a gift.

  6. What perfect timing for mentioning this book, Glenda. When my mother-in-law died on December 13th several years ago, it was very difficult for our family. I wish I'd known about this book! What beautiful,hope-filled words you quoted here. I can't help but agree with Harold Smith's words. Jesus's coming did indeed lock this world in a loving embrace...and OH! how our world needs it!

  7. Thank you for the quote from the book. I've never heard of this book, but will get in in the future for myself and my other grieving friends. God bless, Glenda!

  8. Such sweet words, Glenda. Comforting.

  9. Thank you for recommending this book, Glenda. My dad just ran into the arms of Jesus last month, and it's so difficult to watch my mom grieve the loss of her husband of 60 years. There's so much sorrow all around us... I look forward to reading 'A Decembered Grief'.

    Thank you for stopping in today.
    Blessings to you ~ Mary

  10. I'm praying now for the Lord to bring to mind those who are grieving this Christmas. I know there are always many. Two years ago it was me after losing both my parents. I'm still not "over it" by any means, but I have found joy again in the season, for the most part.

  11. I think you gave me a copy of this! So good!

  12. Thank you for sharing this resource and for sharing your thoughts, Glenda! :)

  13. I like this: "I have come to believe in a future Christmas when all God's children will be home." That's what we look forward to when we lose somebody. Patsy from

  14. What a beautiful post and great reminder Glenda!

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  16. Very timely post. I find myself getting on with life...but at the strangest moments I also find myself near tears. Little things remind me of the sadness that so many families are experiencing. Bless you and Merry Christmas...Ann

  17. amazing post....such encouragement!
    I need to pick up this book to have each December.
    So true....Christmas is God with us, and it's so much more than that 24 few hours on the 25th!

  18. That is beautiful, Glenda, Thanks for the book recommendation. Unfortunately, grief is never far away, and it's good to have a resource to help or be helped as best we can.

  19. Glenda, I love
    your tender heart.

    Our church holds
    a "Longest Day"
    service each year
    on or near the 21st.
    Members share stories
    of loss and how they
    coped. As our minister
    says, we feel everything
    more deeply at Christmas;
    both joys and sorrows.

    Thank you for the book
    recommendation. I am
    betting that someone who
    reads your kind words
    will be blessed by them.

    Merry Christmas, sweet

    xo Suzanne

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  21. The first Thanksgiving, those folks who were supposed to come here for lunch, came. I was up at 5, cooking and cleaning, and by the time those folks left, just before dark, I was exhausted. For Christmas, a friend came because "she didn't want me to be left alone" which is exactly what I needed and wanted. So, I took care of company for Thanksgiving and for Christmas...and there didn't seem to be any time for ME and my sorrow/grief/tears.
    this Christmas, THANKS BE TO GOD...I'm alone, except for the animals. it will be a day much like any other...I'll do chores, read Luke 2 but go to my girlfriend's and share lunch with her and her family. a small concession -smile-.
    What is normal? I don't know. What I do know is God is in the details, every day He cares for me because I cast my cares upon Him. Everyday He and I have a morning meet-up (well, most days) and every day I'm reminded that today is "Easter Sunday"; because He lives, I live...now and forever.
    Yes, grief is hard and sometimes it seems it's not getting any easier but God is the same...yesterday, today and forever and bigger than my grief. I'm like one of my "dumb animals"; they know I'll take care of them because I love them. How can I do less with my Savior?
    Bless His name forever.

  22. Yes, Christmas brings great, great joy, but for many (especially this year) unthinkable sorrow. Thanks for pushing us to remember that, Glenda.

    Merry, merry Christmas.

  23. Very timely post. I find myself getting on with life...but at the strangest moments I also find myself near tears.



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