by Kailey Thom
“I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.”Jeremiah 31:25
The holidays can be a time of joy. A time where we get to hang out with and talk with people that we might not get to see often, or ever. It’s a time to meet with family, introduce friends to each other, and sit together for a delicious meal that everyone sits down and enjoys.
It’s this picturesque thing, the typical family gathering that we see around the holidays. We’re supposed to look forward to it, be excited about it even.
Yet sometimes we’re not.
Sometimes, we don’t have the best relationships with people we see around the holidays. Or we might have bad interactions with friends or family that quickly turn our moods sour.
Most of those interactions come with some very real and raw feelings. However, sometimes we just don’t have the ability to deal with the good interactions because we’re just so socially exhausted and done that even the best of conversations can make you feel like you’re about to get a migraine.
A lot of the time we don’t talk about the social exhaustion that can also come with the holidays. The feeling of just being done with people and wanting to go run and hide in an empty room.
This can lead to people, people like myself, dreading the holidays and the onslaught of social interaction that is bound to come with them like some sort of covert black Friday package deal that I didn’t want and accidentally hit the button for. Especially with multiple family gatherings, by the end of it all, I’m usually just completely and utterly drained.
It’s also incredibly hard when you add in the message that you’re supposed to be present during every little moment during the holidays. I try, sure, but that only ends with me draining my social battery and drifting through the rest of winter break like a ghost, completely defeating the idea of being fully present.
Instead, this year I am going to try to be present when I can and go hide out and take a break from my family when my social battery gets low. I would much rather interact with them when I can give them my full self and attention than if I’m dead from too much socialization. I want to be able to love the people around me wholeheartedly and fully, and for me, a break to rest is the way to do that.
In Jeremiah 31:25, God says that He will refresh us, and give us the strength to keep going. He’s giving you permission to rest! Even God rested on the seventh day of creation, so you don’t need to exhaust yourself with interaction for the sake of other people. Allow yourself to rest and recharge so that when you interact with people, you can be the person that God made you to be, the you who is perfectly loved and able to share that love with both the world, and yourself. Being a Christian doesn’t mean that you must constantly put other people’s needs before your own, because if you do, you’re going to run out of energy to even try and meet other’s needs.
Take care of yourself during these holidays and remind yourself that you’re allowed to take a break and rest when you need it.
Looking for previous entries?
Find our ’22 Advent devotional archive online. haymarketchurch.org/advent