Pearls of Encouragement for Christian
December 2006 Edition
Online Bible Study
Article – Maybe This Christmas Will Be Different
Are you surviving this busy time of
year? My prayer for all of us is to truly focus on
the real meaning of Christmas. Some of you have been
a part of Christian Working Mom for sometime and many
of you have recently joined us. I wish all of you
a Merry Christmas and a Christmas where Christ is
King. The article this month is one I had written
many years ago, but I think it can still be helpful.
For those of you who are new to CWM. Please go to
www.christianworkingmom.com and click on survey to
fill out a survey about CWMs. We have close to 1300
surveys completed. I always enjoy hearing from other
CWM’s, so if you get a chance send me an email
Come join other CWMs at the CWM Blog.
On the blog please share with us your other job, besides
being a Mom. Also, any Christmas traditions you may
have. As always you can start new comments on the
blog. You can visit the blog at http://kimberlychastain.com-myjournal.
Online Bible Study
We have 3 lessons ready for the Online
Bible Study. I hope to add more, but it may have to
wait till after the first of the year. You can complete
the Bible studies at your own pace and then share
your answers on a discussion forum. To find the Online
Bible Study go to http://kimberlychastain.com/discussCWMU.
Article – Maybe This Christmas
Will Be Different
Have you always dreamed of a Norman
Rockwell Christmas - where everyone is singing Christmas
carols and there is joy in the house? Alas, your Christmas
memories are often filled with Uncle Joe getting drunk
and your parents ending up in a fight. By the end
of Christmas day family members are mad and no one
is talking to one another.
Christmas can be very difficult if you
grew up in a dysfunctional family and you choose to
go home for Christmas. Often the holidays bring out
the worst in families instead of the best. Old arguments
that have never been resolved are reignited. Old wounds
that you thought were healed are ripped open once
again. Is there anything you can do to truly make
this Christmas different?
Here are a few suggestions:
1. Pray that God will give you the wisdom
to know when to speak and when to stay quiet. Many
times you won't win the age old argument. Is it worth
2. Have realistic expectations about
what will happen at your family gathering. Often we
dream and envision things will be different and our
dreams are crushed once again.
3. Limit your time or choose not to
place yourself in toxic situations. If you will be
putting yourself or your children in physical or emotional
danger you may need to choose to stay home.
4. Remember and be with your "adopted
family". Often people from dysfunctional families
have extremely close friends who feel like family.
I have had several people tell me about a friend who
is like a sister or a mother to them. You may choose
to spend Christmas with your "adopted family".
5. Remember your heavenly Father loves
you unconditionally and that he can meet your needs,
even when your earthly family does not meet your needs.
6. Recognize that there is a difference
between forgiveness and acceptance of actions. You
can and should forgive family members and others who
have hurt you. That does not mean their actions were
acceptable. Also, you should be cautious of putting
yourself into situations where you could be emotionally
or physically harmed once again.
7. Don't be too hard on yourself. You
may have made great progress in your own spiritual
and emotional growth and find when you go home you
are right back where you started. Dysfunctional family
patterns have a tremendous pull. You can realign yourself
when you return to your own home.
8. Make a conscious choice to raise
your own children and live your life in a more healthy
family. Decide what new Christ honoring traditions
you want to start for your family.
9. Be open to and aware of other people
who come from hurting families. You have a story you
may choose to share of the healing that has occurred
for you. You can give others hope.
10. Be aware that your own addictions
may resurface. Those could include overspending, overeating,
drinking, or drug use. Often we try to soothe our
emotional pain by overspending or overeating.
Above all I pray you will be kind to
yourself. Have realistic expectations of what Christmas
will be for your family. Create your own good memories
with your own family or your "adopted family".
Remember Mary's first Christmas was probably not what
she expected. She probably did not plan on delivering
Jesus in a barn, but what a blessed and glorious night.
May God be your peace and joy this Christmas.
Often during Christmas we get so busy
we forget to spend time with the one Christmas is
all about. Set aside time to be thankful for the best
Christmas present we have ever received.
Till next time,
Kimberly M. Chastain
Kimberly M. Chastain, MS, LMFT is
the Christian Working Mom Coach and a Licensed Marriage
and Family Therapist. She is the author of 2 ebooks
and an online Bible study. You can find more information
For a free, initial coaching session send an email