Joshua 1:1-2
Matthew 22:37-40
Genesis 1:26-27
Philippians 1:18-24
1 Timothy 2:4, 2 Peter 3:9
Galatians 5:22-23
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
John 11:28-37, Isaiah 53:1-33

 Christmas Eve is two weeks away from today.  So are you happy; joyful; excited and anticipating?  If you’re not, what’s wrong with you?  It’s the most wonderful time of the year.  You’re supposed to be in a celebratory and joyful mood all the time.              

Or might the increased expectation of joy and happiness increase your sorrow and unhappiness because of the state of your life or because you lost someone you loved this past year.  This will be the first Christmas without them.              

Christmas stirs up a lot of stuff, much of it good, some of it hard.  Since families gather together, if someone is missing, their absence is especially pronounced.  It’s hard to get together without that person. It might be hard to get into the Christmas spirit because of what they used to do in those preparations.  Maybe they put up the lights or they got the tree or they helped decorate or they brought their special dish or they wrote some meaningful card or they sang that special song.