Don't be Afraid of the Sadness - Encouragement Café - December 1, 2015

Don’t Be Afraid of the Sadness

Café Menu for Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Today’s Special is:  How To Be Joyful When You Are Not Feeling So Joyful

Carefully prepared just for you by your friend, Lara Sadowski

Main Ingredient:

Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you; surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

Isaiah 41:10 NASB


Normally at Thanksgiving and Christmas, I am jumping around like a kid in a candy store.  I am dreaming about turkey and dressing, shopping, Christmas cards and decorating.  Love this time of year!  However, this year is different.

My mother-in-law passed away suddenly on January 10, 2015.  She was so young, and everyone loved her… especially my sweet husband David.  His heart is still hurting from her death, so these holidays are not going to be easy for him and my father-in-law.

My mother-in-law loved the holidays.  She loved cooking and buying presents, so her excitement about Thanksgiving and Christmas makes my David even more down.  I finally brought up Thanksgiving to him the other day, and his blue eyes turned downward.

The firsts are always the hardest.  First Christmas without her.  First Thanksgiving without her.  First birthday without her.  Bless his heart – he’s really hurting.  We all are.  So what should we do?

Isaiah tenderly tells us in our Scripture to not fear.  Don’t be afraid of the sadness.  Don’t be afraid of the tears.  They are both part of the healing process.  

He also said to not be anxious.  Don’t worry about anything.  In my husband and father-in-law’s case, I suggested that we celebrate however they want to celebrate.  If they don’t want to celebrate in the traditional way, that’s okay.  They need to be kind to their hearts as The Lord heals them.

This year, we may go out to dinner instead of having a big home-cooked celebration.  At Christmas, we may go out of town instead of celebrating at home.  Everyone’s situation is different.  The most important thing is to just lean on God as He walks you through the grieving process.

I know that it’s not easy to go through the holidays, looking at all the happy people singing Christmas carols or joyfully shopping for the big feasts.  If you are experiencing the death of a loved one, you need to know and remember how much God loves you.  He knows how much you are hurting because His Son Jesus died for us.  Isaiah also proclaimed that He will strengthen you, help you and uphold you.  

When you are hurting, talk to someone and cry when you feel like it.  Crying is not a bad thing; it’s actually healing.

Most importantly, sweet friend, you need to know you are not alone.  You have a Heavenly Father who adores you and will heal your heart one day at a time.  Just lean on Him.

Take Out:

Make a plan for Thanksgiving and Christmas that is right for you.  Your friends and family will absolutely understand and will help you to do what is right for you.


Father, as happy and joyful as Thanksgiving and Christmas are, these days can be so painful for Your children who are experiencing loss of loved ones.  Please strengthen them and walk with them through this season of grieving.  These upcoming days will not be easy, Lord, but we can do all things through You because You strengthen us.  We love You so much.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

© 2015 by Lara Sadowski.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Tuesday, 01 December 2015.