The greatest tragedy of Christmas is that the true meaning is unknown, commercialized or just plain neglected. Some even argue that Jesus wasn’t born in December. I say well, probably not, most likely not, but at a time when more and more religious freedom is taken away, I choose to celebrate on the popular date. More important than the actual date is a relationship with the one whose birthday we celebrate.
Loving others and serving one another is a way to share the true meaning of Christmas. However, so many have broken heart and can only give broken love.
Most probably feel it has been broken and trampled enough. So we try to protect ourselves by building filters and walls to keep abusers out. The problem is there are some people who are about as lovable as a porcupine who could bring a lot to your life if you ever got past their filters and walls.
We are a society of great pretenders who hide behind our personal style of fabrication. Behind it we experience fear and isolation, but dare not risk interpersonal relationship. This escalates during the holidays.
Many divorces happen because two pretenders married and when they got real, it wasn’t pretty. To forge a true relationship, you have to go through the pain of reality.
Ray and I married from two different worlds. I had been abused a greater part of my life when we married. His past wasn’t a bed of roses either. Fortunately, his response to abuse was to try harder and try harder is what he did when he discovered he had a wounded tiger by the tail.
The more he would try to love and protect me, the more I would rage. I knew in my inner being he was going to leave me like everyone else, so I kept pushing him away. He was as tenacious as a bulldog. Bottom-line, his unconditional love won. We have been married 38 years.
If I had bailed at the first hurt or even the tenth (most were self-inflicted through self-sabotage), I would have never known the love, happiness and sweetness being a couple has brought me.
He taught me to give others a chance as well. He was my safety net when I let my walls down. What I learned through that is often times the person I run from is the person who genuinely has something to deposit in my life. The very thing I don’t like in them is all too often a character flaw in me. Funny how that works.
Thousands of years ago, God said, “It is not good for man to be alone.”
That is true today, not just in marriage, but in meaningful friendships where you share your heart and that very thing that you were trying to figure out comes spilling from your own mouth. To listen to another is to allow their genuine self to come forth.
Dare to let the walls down and be real. Give the gift of your authentic self this season. The results may surprise you.