Peace family, memories and togetherness are such a large part of the holidays, that they often sharpen our grief. If you’ve lost anyone, Chaplain Gary Roe with Hospice Brazos Valley has some good words for you. This is the second of several chats throughout the coming weeks in which Gary will be joining Peace 107 to speak into our places of holiday pain.
Expectations and the Holidays
Gary says expectations are one of the things that makes grieving through the holidays so difficult. We all have expectations when it comes to the holidays, even if you’re hurting from a loss of some kind. Everyone has expectations of ourselves, expectations of other people, expectations of the holidays themselves, and we even have expectations of what we think others expect of us. That’s crushing enough, but add all of that together with the fact that you’re missing someone or enduring a loss during this time,and it’s very, very difficult to navigate the holidays. You can wear yourself out, and then blink on the back side of the holidays, and recognize Jesus is the reason for the season, but that your heart hasn’t been in much of anything.
Gary’s one piece of advice would be to downgrade your expectations of yourself. Downgrade them to God’s expectations of you.
What are God’s expectations of us? Gary says they’re really quite simple: to love him, and to love our neighbor as ourselves. Gary says if you’re grieving, it’s especially important to love yourself well, so that you are able to love others. You can’t give away what you don’t have, so be proactive. Don’t just let the holidays happen. If you’re hurting, remember that you’re the one that gets to choose what you’re going to do for the holidays this year, as well as when, how, and with whom.
Gary says the best gift that you can give to those around you is to really take care of yourself. Gary says to let God take care of you by you taking care of yourself, breathing deeply, and just taking these holidays as they come. He says Hospice Brazos Valley is here to help with that, so feel free to call them at 979-821-2266, if you need to talk to someone.
If you’re hurting these holidays, recognize that expectations are at work, breathe deeply, seek God, and remember that you get to choose what you do this year.
There will be a free presentation called, “Handling Holiday Grief” at The Brew Coffeehouse from 10-11:30am on Saturday, December 3. You can find more resources, free and to purchase, by going to Gary’s website, HERE, or copying and pasting this link into your browser: http://www.garyroe.com/ . You can also email Gary at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Click below to hear Chaplain Gary Roe of Hospice Brazos Valley chat with Peace 107’s Brian and Kat: