When I’m at home with my family for Christmas, the cookies taste better, the lights glow brighter, and the fire is warmer. That’s the way memories are. They are stronger when pulled by a longing to be somewhere we’re not. Christmas is bleak and gray when we’re away from our families, but the next time we all gather together, what a memory that holiday becomes.
I’ve spent a few holidays away from home, and what gets me through each time are the wonderful memories of past holidays warming my heart. When I can’t be with my family, I think so hard about Mom’s oatmeal-raisin cookies that I can almost taste them. I also think of the time my brother strung up Christmas lights that didn’t work, and I can’t help but laugh. We carry the love and memories of our families with us wherever we are during the holidays, and that’s what holds us up until we can all be together again.
Father, thank You for every Christmas spent with loved ones, making wonderful memories to carry us through the gray holidays when we can’t be together. Bless those who can’t be home this year. Remind them of the love that awaits them, and strengthen their hearts with hope.