WOW! Y’ALL, WE MADE IT TO CHRISTMAS!
I’m truly in a little bit of disbelief. Something deep inside me wants to take to the streets Cindy-Lou Who style, grab hands with all my neighbors around a gigantic Christmas tree and scream, “Welcome Christmas! Bring Your Cheer!”
I don’t know about you, but to me Christmas feels like it’s taken about five years to get here! Christmas 2020 has felt so desperately awaited in my heart over the past months.
At the beginning of fall, just thinking about Christmas made me choke up a little bit. Anticipating the sigh of relief of a concluded election (for my USA peeps), a new year on the horizon and the familiarity of Christmas trees and houses covered in colorful lights felt too good to be true.
I remember thinking, I can’t wait for something familiar!
We’ve all been through a LOT this year. Snuggling under fluffy blankets, sipping hot chocolate with a plate of santa-shaped sugar cookies and settling in for another cheesy Hallmark movie feels like just what the doctor ordered! Obviously, there is so much more beauty and value to Christmas than these trivial things, especially as Christians, but these mundane, trivial things are feeling extra holy this go-round.
There’s something about the warmth, the intentional drawing near with our closest friends and family and the peace of salvaging something predictable from 2020 that makes this year’s Christmas season feel like an extra big gift straight from the heart of Jesus.
This year, more than ever, everything’s out of whack and so many things we had looked to for a false sense of identity have been stripped away. We are all starved for encouragement. This has left so many people wondering if they matter and if they add value to the world.
Did you know that your words could bring healing to those hurting places for people? Words are incredibly powerful! When used well words have the power to create, to spark a revolution and to heal. As Proverbs 16:24 stays, “Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”
A meaningful letter is a free, heartfelt gift that will last far beyond anything you could buy someone. Can you remember the best compliment you’ve ever received? Do you remember a time someone pointed out a strength you have, or a way you impacted them that has always stuck with you?
They may not even remember saying it, but it shifted something DEEP inside you that may have altered the trajectory of your life! That is the power of taking the extra time to sit down, reflect on what someone means to you, listen to what God wants to say to them, and write from your heart.
I get it though, sometimes it’s hard to think of the words. Or maybe you can think of them, but can’t quite figure out how to say it in a card. Writing heart-felt letters is my absolute FAVORITE thing to do but it can still be hard to make time for it or to know where to start. So, I’ve compiled some tips and tricks for you to add to your toolbox to write more meaningful letters!
If you’re not sure who to write to, ask yourself who comes to mind for these categories and start there. If someone comes to mind, you should definitely let them know how they’ve impacted you!
Some people to consider: family, friends, classmates, teachers / professors, school admins, local pastors, ministry leaders, new moms, newlyweds, favorite barista, the grocery store clerk, local delivery drivers (UPS, FedEx, Amazon Prime), etc.
You could even start out by writing to a complete stranger! A few years back I totally fell in love with the More Love Letters project which was birthed from the founder, Hannah Brencher, writing letters to leave around her city to brighten people’s day – how cool is that? Now it’s a website where you can write encouraging letters to designated strangers around the world!
First, take some of the pressure off yourself with this one – it does NOT have to be perfect! Meaningful letters are truly a “thought that counts” business. Hate your handwriting? Type it up, print it out and snail mail it off anyways! Can’t send via snail mail and want to send it as an email or a text? That’s amazing as well!
If your words feel awkward or you miss a few punctuation marks or repeat the same word too many times, you will be fully forgiven.
Here are some things to think about / write about:
What a wild ride 2020 has been! Thinking about this past year, you immediately came to mind as someone who really helped make this year better! I am so thankful to have you in my life. Thank you for your consistency, thank you for the times you checked in on me and showed up in my life regardless of what was going on in the world, or in your own life! It truly meant so much. You are someone who knows how to love like Jesus and put others above yourself! I love the way you put your whole self into everything you do. You live with such a beautiful integrity and passion, and I learn so much from observing the way you love and serve your family. Whenever your name comes up in conversation with others, the words “consistent” and “fully present” are always used. I just want you to know that your presence matters. You are so loved just for who you are, and I truly cherish having you as a friend! I hope you have an amazing Christmas, are surrounded in Jesus’ loving embrace and are reminded time and time again by the people in your life that you are a treasure!
Have a blessed Christmas!
I hope this gave you some good starting points to writing meaningful letters to the people in your life! I hope you’ve got a few people in mind who you’d love to encourage through your words. If you find yourself getting distracted and not wanting to make time to sit down and do it, just know that is likely the enemy trying to stop all the blessings God wants to release through your words! Your words are a gift, and they are powerful and needed. What you have to say is incredibly valuable, and I truly believe the things you have to say will be cherished by the people who receive your letters! And in the spirit of the article, I wanted to end with a quick note to YOU!
Dear Salt Fam,
YOU mean the world to us! You continue to show up for us despite all the craziness of this year. Beyond that, you are so incredibly hungry to grow and to see Jesus be glorified in your life and in the lives of the people around you. Thank you for being so steadfast. Thank you for showing up this year even when it felt difficult. I am so insanely proud of you for pressing into all the discomfort of this year and for continuing to pursue growth in your faith! God has big plans for you in the upcoming year and I can’t wait to see how they play out! Keep pressing into Jesus, keep holding onto everything God has placed in your hands, and keep surrendering all your worries into His trustworthy hands! You are so insanely loved and so immeasurably valuable.
Have a blessed Christmas!
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