BE HAPPY, IT’S CHRISTMAS                                         Philippians 2:2-11

Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. (v4)

More people fall into depression at Christmas than at any other time of the year. Why? The main reason is that during this season the expectation is almost always, “Be happy, it’s Christmas time. Drop all expression of sadness and put on a happy face.

People who may not feel like joining in the festivities at Christmas because of inner sadness they are experiencing, find the pain increasing when they are put under pressure and urged to enjoy themselves. When this causes them to feel resentful, they try to repress the feeling and repressed resentment is one of the factors that contributes to depression.

There is another factor to consider too. Some years ago a psychologist devised a stress test, which he used to demonstrate that the period of Christmas itself carries with it a significant amount of stress. Buying the right presents, sending out the cards, organizing events for the children – all these things increase the stress factor, he said. Most of us could have told him that without the help of a test.

What does all this say to us as Christians? It says that we ought to take notice of the text at the top of this page and ask God to help us at this season of the year to consider not simply our own needs, but the needs of those for whom Christmas may bring added pain.

PRAYER LINE: Father, again I ask You to give me a heart that senses the sorrow of others. And help me not to be a pressure but to relieve the pressure. In Jesus’ Name. Amen. (EDWJ)

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The One who holds the universe will never let you down.

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