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I miss you more at Christmastime...

Yesterday a friend told me that he and his girlfriend broke up on Christmas day. Initially I was incredulous, but upon reflection, I understood.

One year, at Christmastime, I became absolutely convinced that a break up was the best option for me. We had tried so hard to make it work. And as I watched other couples celebrate the holiday, and be happy, my heart ached and I could no longer pretend. It went something like, "Thanks for the great present, but it's over."

Yeah, Christmas can sucker punch you if you're not careful. All of the traditions and presents are really about love. If you do not have a significant loving relationship in your life, the void is palpable. If you are in an unsatisfying relationship, you feel suffocated by the pretense.

If you are smart, you embrace that feeling instead of ignoring it. You realize that the beauty of Christmas is also what makes it an opportunity for improvement.

Christmas is a special time to appreciate that this is a wonderful life. But it is also a time to reflect. You can recognize those things that you want, acknowledge those things that you lack, and commit to bridging that gap.

As the pastor said on Sunday, Christmas is a time to experience the love. And once you do, you owe it to yourself and to Christmas to find a special love of your own.
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