It’s the happiest and most joyous time of the year, so naturally, suicides and a general feeling of the Blues are at their highest level of the year, also.
Those who do not have the knowledge, trust, faith or belief in God, at this time of the year, feel that emptiness more than at any other time. This is more my opinion than substantiated fact, but I don’t think anyone will disagree with me. We read about the holiday blues symptom every Christmas season.
Even those people who are adamant God doesn’t exist, or those who refuse to accept Yeshua in the way the Bible says we should and think they are OK (because their Priest or Minister has taught them that so long as you are a “good” person you go to heaven), feel a sense of “incompleteness” because (again, my opinion) they know, deep inside, that they are missing the most important part of what this holiday is supposed to be about.
No one can tell you you are saved and no one can tell you the Spirit of the Living God, the Ruach HaKodesh, is in you. This has to be from your asking God directly, and from your acceptance from God, directly, privately, and faithfully. If you haven’t accepted your own sinfulness, that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Messiah God promised to send to take away your sins, and committed yourself to doing T’shuvah (turning from sin), you can’t receive the ultimate gift, which is the Grace of God, and the the Holy Spirit. And if you don’t have this, then you are missing out. We all need to admit our own overbearing and natural sinfulness, and that we cannot stop sinning without God’s help, and (this is the important part, the part that shows you have really “turned”) that we do not want to sin anymore. When we do this, and then ask for His forgiveness and guidance for the rest of our life, we can receive the Ruach HaKodesh.
I was afraid that this would make me a different person, that I would have to stop being who I was (although I really didn’t like much of who I was, I didn’t want to lose it.) Here’s the surprise: now that I have been on that path for years, I realize that I haven’t stopped being me, I am just becoming a better me. And I don’t feel that emptiness, or incompleteness that I did before I made that leap of faith.
It’s that emptiness that causes the holiday blues. No one is immune; even those who know and love the Lord have “down” times, and this season seems to make any sadness worse. Maybe because all we see on TV, hear on radio, and are exposed to everywhere we go is joy-joy, happy-happy people and family that all get along and love each other. Yuch! That’s not the real world. And that is what makes this season so joyously unhappy- everywhere we go and everything we see is rose-colored utopia, but then real life hits us in the face.
You may be asking, “So, nu? Steve- what’s this “magic bullet” you have to overcome the holiday blues?”
I was looking over answers to essay questions from a class about incense and prayer that I took when getting my Certificate of Messianic Studies degree and I found this:
Praise has power that is hidden from us until we begin to use it. Praise reminds us of who we are- the children of the Almighty! Praise brings back to our minds all He has done in our lives, and the lives of others. When we praise the L-rd we can’t help but become joyful, for His spirit is awakened in us as we call on His name in thanksgiving. The best way to get out of the dumps is to count your blessings, and that is a form of praise. Praise makes us feel better, and isn’t that a powerful thing?
That’s the answer: thankful prayer and praise. It is so simple and it is so necessary for us to remember to do. In order to praise God we have to enumerate those things that are wonderful and glorious about Him, and when we do that we naturally have to personalize it. That causes us to think about all the things God has done for us. We are a self-centered and egotistical species: when I review the history of our people throughout the Millennia I think, “How can anyone doubt there is a loving, compassionate and forgiving God? If there wasn’t, how else could Mankind have survived for so long?” I mean, really- we are the most self-destructive thing that there ever has been. Yet, despite ourselves, we have survived. Yes, not just survived, but thrived. There just has to be a God in heaven protecting us.
Praise and thankful prayer invigorates the Ruach inside a Believer. C’mon, admit it- I do- sometimes we stifle the Spirit and instead of dying to self we manage to hang on and continue. We overcome the Spirit, which is a shepherd and guide, but can be ignored if our sinful nature is allowed to take charge. It is the constant battle, the reason Shaul (Paul) called himself a wretched man- the little devil on one shoulder and the little angel on the other.
When we praise and give thanks, the little angel turns into Arnold Schwarzenegger and the little devil turns into Steve Urkel.
When the holiday blues start to creep up on you, and anytime during the year you feel down, praise the Lord, give thanks for His salvation, think of all that you do have, and remind yourself that no matter how bad it is now, you have a guaranteed reservation at the Hotel Paradise. And when you get there you won’t ever have to check out. Eternity in Eden is yours, and all you have to do is wait a while longer before you are there. That hope should be able to get you past any temporary situation, which means anything in this life because this life is not the destination and it is not all there is…it is nothing more than the crossing from one place to another.
When you feel down and out, lift up your head and shout, “Thank you, Father! Thank you, Yeshua!! Thank you Ruach!” And when you tell them why you are so thankful, you will feel better.
As my people say, “Try it: you’ll like it! After all, what could it hoit?”