Becky Kiser is a dear friend who has a tremendous ministry over at sacredholidays.com. It is a ministry dedicated to connecting the heart of women to the heart of God during peak seasons of women's lives (the holidays they celebrate). Becky’s greatest aim in life is that her life would make a significant impact on her world for the name of Christ. She hopes women would find confidence in following Jesus, studying His Word and living out what He has said. Last week she posted the following on her own blog and we thought it might be helpful for some of you. Make sure you go check out sacredholidays.com. We promise it is well worth your time!
Whether married, single, divorced or widowed, for most of us our love lives are anything but a Hallmark Movie. There are no Notebook or Pride & Prejudice romances to be found. We are lonely in our singleness or lonely in our marriages.
So how do we cope on a holiday that's all about love? Not just cope, but if we are called to abundant life (John 10:10), how do we have that when things feel so womp-womp? How do we remain true to ourselves when our celebrations of love feel forced?
IF YOU WERE MY BFF, THIS IS WHAT I'D TELL YOU TODAY:
BE HONEST ABOUT HOW YOU FEEL
If you feel sad, be sad. If you feel indifferent to the holiday, be indifferent. If you feel in love, be in love. If you feel grateful, be grateful. Whatever it is that you are feeling about this day, feel it. It's OK. This doesn't have to be a big production of emotions, but it is so healthy to be honest with where you are.
There is nothing in the Bible that says you need to have it all together. It is a lie we believe that we think we should all feel giddy with Jesus joy all the time. We can take all our emotions to Him He can handle it. He has felt them. He allows them. Read Psalms if you want some proof!
CHOOSE JOY BY BEING GRATEFUL (Yes, you can roll your eyes at this one)
I know that seems to contradict what I just said but I promise you that this will turn whatever funk you might feel into a lighter thing, and hopefully even into a joy filled day.
A few years ago my husband, Chris and I were in a really bad place in our marriage. We had tried everything and nothing was working. One of the things that helped me come out of that really hard season was to see the good, as little as there might have been, in the present. I gave him a stack of post its and promised to write something each day that I loved about him. This was really hard to do, especially in that season. But slowly things began to change. I started to notice the good because I was looking for it. Sometimes we give our struggles too much attention when we need to focus more on the good before us. Four years later and our bathroom mirror is still covered in post its. We've found that when we seek to see the good it makes the not so good more bearable.
Struggling to see good in your current season? Ask your Father to show you. Ask for eyes to see.
JESUS ISN'T YOUR BOYFRIEND BUT HE IS (you get to choose)
I remember when I was a teenager and girls would say that Jesus was their boyfriend because they'd Kissed Dating Goodbye. (Anyone else read that book and gave that a try? Oh SO funny!) I'd roll my eyes (in my head because I wouldn't think to do it obviously, ha!). Listen, Jesus isn't your boyfriend, He is so much more than that. Boyfriends come and go, but He lasts forever. He is referenced as husband several times through scripture. This title can be lost on us because many of us have experience this role as being impermanent. Jesus is anything but temporary. He is constant. You can always, always count on Him.
Today, ask your Father who He is. Ask Him what name He wants you to call Him. This might sound strange, but try it. Last week I asked Him this question and He gave me the name Daddy. I've always called Him Lord or Father and last week He worked on my heart to call Him Daddy, to see Him as Daddy. All throughout scripture we see God as different roles-- Savior, Healer, Author, Creator, etc.
Jesus is enough for whatever it is you are going through. Let Him come in and be all you need.
DON'T SOCIAL MEDIA BINGE OR SULK (It's not even real)
The endless flip of the thumb upward. We love it. We hate it. We can't stop won't stop. We swear it off. Then we are back again. It can be a little much at times. So if Valentine's day is a hard one for you, then maybe choose to stay off of it that day or next week. Others will be giving their loved ones lots of shout outs and posting pics of all the things that don't typically happen. You will see all the romance and the heart eyes. You will hear all things rosey.
Truth: About 95% of it is filtered, the other 5% haven't figured out filters yet. Ha!
Social media can be a beautiful place to grow community and celebrate with others. But it can be our pit if we let it. If you can tell that it's not good for you during this holidays, maybe just remove it from you phone for a few days. I can promise you that you won't miss anything important-- if it was you'll get a call or a text.
HAVE SOME FUN!
Yes! Go have fun! Regardless of if you are single or married, go and have some fun on Valentine's day! Here are some fun things you can do just because, not dependent on anyone else:
Do some random acts of kindness (invite a friend to tag along)
Get a new outfit that is all red or pink
Throw a fancy dinner party for friends
Have a cheesy chick flick night
Call 10 people who have loved you well and thank them for it
Make old fashioned Valentine's for your co-workers
Visit a nursing home or hospital and take treats
Drop donuts or cupcakes off at your local Fire Station
Praying for you this week!
P.S. If you haven't yet ordered your Lent study, then you want to get on that today! Lent begins in just 20 days. The Final Days of Jesus study is all about... you guessed it, the Final Days of Jesus. :) There are scripture study days and also prayer, sabbath and justice days each week. 10% of profits provide Bible studies for women in prison. There is a study for women, men and families!
You can get the lent study at sacredholidays.com