Hope: Handcuffs for Grief

Hope Handcuffs for Grief

By Sheri Ellington

Like many others, we are facing our first Christmas without close family members. My mom and my husband’s brother died this year. She died after a short battle with cancer, and he died at the hands of a murderer. Both sides of our family are hurting. Each person is dealing with the grief in his own way. If you are in a similar situation this Christmas, dealing with the mixed emotions that come with grief and holiday festivities, my prayer is that this will be a blessing to you.

First of all, it is helpful to acknowledge that we all grieve differently, and that we cannot look at others from the outside and know how they are coping on the inside. From my own experience and observation, there are many ways to process grief. Some cry, while some are quiet; some stay busy and try to get out of the house as much as possible, while some long to withdraw into isolation and avoid all celebrations.

There is no magic formula for grieving, but there is a Godly and biblical way to grieve: with hope.

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Just a Light Bulb

Just a Lightbulb

By Sheri Ellington

Christmastime is such a fun, but busy, time of year. There’s so much to do to get ready – making lists, shopping, baking, decorating…ah, decorating. Most of the decorating is fun, but there is one part that can be very frustrating and really try our patience, at least at my house: the lights!

It can be challenging to get all of our lights to work – inside of the house (on the banisters, on the Christmas trees, in the windows), and outside of the house (around the doors and on the shrubs). When it can take so much time to decorate and can even be frustrating when things don’t work as they should, why do we do continue to hang Christmas lights year after year?

Can you really imagine Christmas without the lights?

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Gravy, Grief & Glitter

Gravy Grief and Glitter

By Sheri Ellington

If you’ve followed my story thus far, you know that my family has experienced much loss over the past year. Reaching out to our extended families, I can count nine who have died. The closest to me was my mom. The closest to my husband was his brother. Both sides of our family are grieving, but not like those without hope (1 Thessalonians 4:13). Praise the Lord for the hope we have in Jesus Christ! Still, dealing with the grief is a daily battle, and our first holiday without these two proved to be a tougher battle than I reckoned it would be.

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God’s Will for You in Christ Jesus

Be Thankful in All Circumstances

By Sheri Ellington

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

If you’ve ever been encouraged to memorize scriptures, then you have to love verses like 1 Thessalonians 5:16 and 17! “Rejoice always,” “pray without ceasing!” Got it! Two verses memorized! Maybe we should add verse 18 since it is part of the same sentence (notice the commas, not periods, at the end of verses 16 and 17): “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

Three verses, one sentence, twenty-two words

Why is this statement in 1 Thessalonians so important?

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“Do Something!” A Son’s Blood Calls Out to His Mother

Do Something Pray

By Patricia Ellington

I am Patricia Ellington, Tommy’s mother.

First of all, I have good news for you: God loves you!

Next, I want you to know that I have forgiven whoever shot and killed my son, Tommy Ellington, because I know who we are dealing with, but I do expect justice.

That was the easy part. Now for the hard part:

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