Christmas can be such a stressful time for folk who are in pain or facing chronic challenges of all kinds. I know about that. During the 22 years of my battle with appalling pain from chronic and recurring acute pancreatitis I had several Christmases in hospitals. Two of them were in London, where it was so hard to be away from family and friends. One was in Guernsey where, after leading Christmas Day worship, I was too ill to eat anything and was admitted via A&E to the ward with an acute attack. It added insult to injury when one nurse suggested I had probably overdone it at the dinner table or on the bottle! Grrr. I hadn’t even got that far!
But I discovered then, as I know now, that Christmas peace and joy are not dependent on our circumstances. They come from our relationships. Loving and being loved are fundamental to them both. Knowing that God’s love for me led Him to give His only son Jesus for me sustained me through those tough seasons, and still does today.
It gives me real joy to sign books for friends and contacts who have ordered one or more to be sent to them at this time. I can mail them anywhere in the UK at £8.99 plus £1.75 p&p. One friend just asked me for 11 copies and another for 5 – to give away as gifts. I not only sign each one, I also pray that each one will be a real source of help and encouragement to the reader.
May you find peace and joy this Christmas and in the New Year!