The darkest time of year

It’s a slow descent into darkness.

The long, lazy days of summer give way unto the shorter, crisper, colourful days of fall.

But now, we’re slowly creeping into the darkest days of the year. Literally, and unfortunately for many, figuratively as well.

I’ve been thinking lately how interesting it is that our season of lights and giving and peace to all- happens during the darkest time of the year. As winter solstice approaches and Christmas creeps up on us, we gather with friends. We eat and bake. We give gifts. We fill our homes with the smell of cider and pine. We get cozy.

I know that Jesus wasn’t born on December 25th–and it wasn’t the Christians that originally chose this time of year to gather and celebrate. Rather, it was communities of pagans who celebrated the festival of lights in this cold, dark time of year. Those Pagans were smart.

I’ve been extra sure to eat a lot of clementines this year and to make sure that I am taking my vitamins. I miss the sunlight and the long evenings of summer. But in this darkest time of year, I am so grateful for the people and places that make my heart feel light and my home feel warm…

And I have tried to be extra generous too-remembering that it is a time of year where the rich and poor are separated further by the holiday parties, fancy clothes, the extravagant meals and gifts under the tree. Of course there is always more we can do for those less fortunate then us- but being mindful is a start. Perhaps even an extra dash of patience could even go a long way this time of year. Taking a second to have a seemingly meaningless conversation or to smile at someone at work is something easy that I could do to make the day a little brighter.

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