I pray for all those who are hurting this Christmas and are having to spend it without a loved one. For many, Christmas marks a time when they grieve for the ones they have lost over the past year whether that be a parent, child, sibling, spouse or partner. I hope that they feel the enveloping presence of their loved one all over them this holiday season. May they know that they are being watched over and loved by so many and may that thought bring them some form of comfort this holiday season.
I pray for all those who find themselves either unemployed or homeless this holiday season. May they be able to find something comforting these next few days as they face a possibly bleak 2012. May those who are seeking employment not get disheartened as they face rejection after rejection. May those who are homeless find some way to get through the holiday season without fear of death or harassment.
I pray for those who are unable to spend Christmas with their loved ones this year whether that be by choice or by design. May they find ways to keep in contact with their family in spite of the distance and may they be able to make a family wherever they are to help them celebrate the holiday season.
I pray for those who are in abusive living situations. I pray that over the next few days, things improve for them. May they receive guidance and strength and courage to stand up for themselves and if necessary remove themselves from the horrible situations they are in. May they not let their circumstances change who they are. I sincerely hope that they find a better situation for themselves before it is too late.
Lastly, I pray for all those suffering with addictions this holiday season. Those who would rather spend the holiday with drugs and alcohol than actual people. Those who are willing to sell their Christmas presents for cash for that next hit. Those who are even willing to resort to stealing other people's Christmas presents for drug money. Addiction is a terrible disease. It really does affect so many people. I just pray that they are able to break the cycle of addiction and get back on the right path before it's too late.
These are the prayers that are weighing on my heart this holiday season. While you're busy opening gifts or carving up a ham or watching the football game this Christmas, I hope you will take a minute to just silently pray for these people. Perhaps you know somebody that is struggling with one of these issues; if so, pray for them specifically. Even if you don't know anybody, though, that doesn't mean you shouldn't pray at all. Just take a second amidst all the gift-giving and cooking and football to acknowledge that for so many, there will be no gift-giving. There will be no home-cooked meal. There will be no football watching. For many, their Christmas will be filled with nothing but fear and abuse. Let's remember that in the midst of our revelry. There's so many who could use the prayers. Let's make sure we send them some.