This post is being brought to you by a movie, a tweet, and a devotional. Interesting combo, right?
On Christmas Eve, I went to see “A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood” with my wife, youngest daughter, Mom, and Dad. ‘Beautiful’ is definitely the appropriate word to attach to this movie. Not surprisingly, Tom Hanks nailed the character of Mr. Rogers, and the movie did an amazing job of illustrating just how much of a handprint Fred Rogers left on the lives of those who met and watched him.
I came across a tweet later that day from one of my favorite “Twitterers” that highlighted a particularly poignant phrase from the movie.
Fast forward to a couple days ago, where I read a devotional concerning the mixed emotions that Mary (Jesus’ earthly momma) must have felt when Simeon the prophet shared his thoughts on her newborn son. He sang Jesus’ praises, but then added that a sword would eventually pierce Mary’s heart, foreshadowing the agonizing heartbreak she would feel during His crucifixion.
How does this all come together?
I believe that there are many people reading this who currently find themselves in Mary’s shoes. The holiday season can be a mixture of overwhelming joy and excruciating pain.
And sometimes, in an effort to keep the positivity going into the new year, we don’t mention or manage our true feelings.
This isn’t healthy…or necessary. Keeping up the “Christmas spirit” and holiday cheer doesn’t require us to mask our pain or sadness. Because doing so would undermine a key component of Jesus’ earthly ministry.
Every aspect of Jesus’ life was sprinkled with suffering. He didn’t shy away from it, and He lovingly offers us His nail-scarred hand to hold in the midst of our own sorrow. We don’t have to be fake about how we feel.
Our feelings are mentionable, and manageable, in Jesus’ hands.