The Glimmer of Light

Hello faithful blog readers! Thought I’d pop in and say hi.

[Also note that the majority of this post was written around a week ago.]

Life is crazy but pretty awesome nonetheless. For one thing, last week was Crazy Writing Week. What’s crazy writing week? Basically a competition to write a bunch. I wasn’t going to join, but I ended up using it as motivation to tackle all of my school-related writing. Which means I now have time to write one blog post.

So where have I been? What have I been doing? What’s up?

Life’s pretty much the same as it has been for the past year. Too much time staring at a screen. Tired of being limited because of a pandemic. But there have been ups and downs.

This week I feel motivated. Pumped. Happy. Next week I might feel discouraged and buried under schoolwork. But life is still good. All I have to do is look up from my computer to see it. In fact, I don’t even have to look up from my screen to see it. In the corners of my PC desktop are Word documents titled “Dear Lord” or “Dear God.” They are combinations of letters and prayers to God, and every word reminds me of how faithful He is. Things I didn’t see then I can see now. Things I still don’t understand I can now place in His hands.

Life’s been the same. I’m pretty much just the same, too. Same struggles, same discouragements. But I think I am growing. Slowly, painfully, I am learning some things.

I’m not finding the answers I always wanted. I still haven’t figured out the secret to being motivated, the secret to smiling when you’re down, or the secret to getting mountains of tasks completed. But I’m learning to place all those things in His hands.

I don’t understand the mysteries of the universe. I don’t know the answers to the questions vibrating through my brain. And yet, I can write letter after letter to my Father in Heaven asking and asking and asking, and He’s still listening. At the end of the day, I may not get the satisfaction and peace of having figured out just the right solution, of having perfectly put the puzzle pieces together, but it’s okay. Because His peace is the peace that surpasses understanding.

My heart might be filled with sadness, disappointment, and confusion, yet in it all his perfect peace can shine through and light up the darkness.

I’ll keep pressing on to that glorious light. I’ll keep seeking His face. I’ll never stop wanting to understand. But that twinkle of light sparkling from the corners of my mind is enough. It only takes a spark to destroy the darkness and as long as I have Him, I’ll never be without that glimmer of light.

So hold onto that glimmer and don’t let go.

Finding your identity

Dancing for the Holy One

Finding your own identity can be hard. Sometimes we try to find it in objects, how much money we have, material things. And it’s so hard that it can feel impossible. Well, that’s because it is.

If you try to put your value and identity in material things, it will just leave you unsatisfied, and wondering if you’re even worth anything. That’s bad. That’s so bad, in fact, that I am now sitting here at 11:30pm writing to tell you that there’s something better. Something so much better, that it’s hard to describe.

In Ephesians, chapters 1 & 2 Paul writes to the church in Ephesus. He tells them so many things about who they are in Christ.

To start off, who am I in Christ?

I am blessed

I am chosen, which means that I am wanted

I am adopted into Christ’s family

I am redeemed by the…

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The Wonder of Macro

When I have a momentary break in the craziness of life or just when I need a break from all the craziness, I snap a macro lens onto a Canon and head outside. I’m not quite sure what it is about it, but macro, more than any other kind of photography, is magical. Maybe it’s the complexity in the simplest things. Maybe it’s the challenge of creating a masterpiece from a single object. Or maybe it’s the wondrous discovery of things I could never see before.

Whatever the case, it seriously amazes me.

With a regular landscape lens on my camera, I would have to seek out dazzling heights, brilliant lighting, or breathtaking contrast to get the same story and depth in a photo. It’s all about finding just the right angle, just the right lighting, just the right subject.

With macro I can just look right in front of me. Anywhere. Anything. Find the simple and zoom in. There’s a world of beauty and complexity in there.


“The heavens declare the glory of God,
    and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.”

-Psalm 19:1 (ESV)

“It is the glory of God to conceal things,
    but the glory of kings is to search things out.”

-Proverbs 25:2 (ESV)

Don’t Give Up

To you who feel without purpose.
To you who feel like you’ve lost your passion.

To you who feel lost and without hope.

Don’t give up.

Life may seem hopeless. It may feel like joy will never come again.

Don’t give up.

It’s not hopeless. Life has meaning. Life has purpose.

God is holding on. He will never let go.

He has a purpose for your life beyond anything you could ever imagine.

As pain drowns out everything but the numbness, hold onto hope.

When you wonder what you’re even doing living, don’t give up.

Lean into his love. Press on, even when it is harder than anything you’ve ever done.

When you cross the dawn it will be beautiful like nothing else. The passion you thought was dead will bloom stronger and purer than ever before.

Don’t give up.

You will never be tempted beyond your ability. Don’t give up.

Cling to his promises.

He will provide a way of escape. Do not heed Satan’s lies. There is hope, invisible and invincible, through Jesus Christ the Savior of the world.

He who gave his very life to save you will not let go now. He loves you deeply, overwhelmingly, wondrously, awesomely. He will never, no never, no never, ever leave you.

For he has indeed promised “I will never leave nor forsake you.”

To you who feel life is too much. To you who feel another breath is too heavy a burden to bear. To you who have lost all hope.

Don’t give up. Hope is never lost. He will give you strength.

To you who are exhausted inside and out. To you who pretend to know your purpose, who pretend to feel passion, to those who feel their whole life is fake. To you who feel no one else will ever understand.

He understands. He heals. He holds you.

You who are weary, lift your drooping limbs and raise your eyes to heaven. You who are heavy-laden, who don’t have the strength, come to Him. He calls to you:

Rest, beloved. Let your soul find rest. Wait for me, and I will give you rest.

However hard it feels, however hopeless, promise me this one thing:

Don’t give up.


Hebrews 12:12-13

1 Corinthians 10:13

Matthew 11:28-30

Isaiah 40:28-31

Hebrews 13:5b-6

Philippians 3:13-14


At Her Fingertips Cover Reveal

Hello friends and random readers! It’s been awhile. In fact it’s been almost two months.

But today, I’m here with something super exciting: a cover reveal!!!!! Kellyn Roth is an awesome author with awesome books. One of the things I appreciate about her is how she balances resolved/happy endings with realistic ones. Her stories never end “happily ever after.” Instead, her endings leave you with wonder and fill you with hope. She doesn’t sacrifice truth for a perfectly happy ending.

And now, this Feburary 23rd, I am excited to be part of cover reveal for her release of At Her Fingertips.

What is At Her Fingertips? It’s the 3rd book in The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, following the lives of two sisters in the Late Victorian Era.

If you haven’t read the first two books or seen their gorgeous covers, you absolutely need to!

#1: The Dressmaker’s Secret

If they knew who she was they’d never accept what she’s become.

The Dressmaker's Secret (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy Book 1) by [Kellyn Roth]

#2: Ivy Introspective

In a world that doesn’t understand her, how can she grow?

Ivy Introspective (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy Book 2) by [Kellyn Roth]

And don’t forget the new in-between book (#2.5) Becoming Miss Knight!

Becoming Miss Knight: an Alice and Ivy novella (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy) by [Kellyn Roth]

Aren’t those covers so awesome?? Are you ready for #3?

First, a little bit about the author!

~About Kellyn Roth~

Kellyn Roth is a Christian historical women’s fiction & romance author from North-Eastern Oregon who has independently published multiple novels, the most notable being The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy series. You should definitely call her Kell.

Kell lives on family-owned property outside an unmemorable but historical town with her parents, two little brothers, arbitrary cat, precious border collies, a dozen cows, and lots of chickens. She also possesses a classic, vintage aesthetic which does not at all speak to her country girl side, but such is life.

When not writing, Kell likes to blog, teach writing to her various students, have day jobs which allow her to keep her car properly insured, and spend lavish amounts of money on Dairy Queen french fries. She also likes to talk about Keira Knightley and her own books way too much.


You can find Kellyn on:

And now for At Her Fingertips!!!

~At Her FingerTips (What it’s about)~

She’s willing to do anything to follow her plan.

Debutante Alice Knight is ready for her first social season in London. She’s determined to impress society and her mother with an affluent match, at last escaping her past and embracing a future of her own making.

Peter Strauss, an American reporter visiting England, isn’t exactly what Alice had in mind. However, his friendship proves invaluable as Alice faces the challenges of her debut. Almost immediately, she attracts the attention of a well-born gentleman—perfect save for the simple fact that he’s not a Christian.

The life she longs for is finally at her fingertips, but between her own heart and the convictions of her faith, she isn’t sure she ought to grasp it.

When is it Releasing?

At Her Fingertips by Kellyn Roth is releasing on July 17th, 2021. (It feels so far away…).

Where Can I BUY It? Can I Preorder it?

Yesss!!! You can preorder it now on Amazon and have it delivered to your Kindle as soon as it releases!! You can find the link at the end of this post.

Where’s The Cover? What does it look like???

And now…for the cover reveal!

Behold the dots…

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And now for the absolutely beautiful cover!!!!!

At Her Fingertips

She’s willing to do anything to follow her plan.

ISN’T IT SOO PRETTYY???!?!??!

I’m so excited!!!!

Now for all the other fun jazz.

And now, finally, how to get it!!

You can preorder At Her Fingertips here!!!

Isn’t it so pretty? Are you excited for the release? Are you planning on preordering it?

Have an awesome week!


“Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.””

-John 8:12 (ESV)


12 Days of Christmas | Day 12 | Merry Christmas

Hello all of y’all.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

Christmas is actually finally here!

I hope you have a wonderful and blessed day celebrating our savior’s birth.

See you in the New Year! 🙂


Song of the Day: Welcome to Our World by Chris Rice

Such a beautiful, precious song capturing the wonder of Christmas.


“When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”

And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them.

But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.”

-Luke 2:15-20 (ESV)

12 Days of Christmas | Day 11 | A Prayer for Christmas

Today I’m going to do something a little different and I’m not really sure how it will go. I’m going to share some hopes, fears, and thoughts from my heart with you in the form of a prayer. I hope you are blessed.


Oh Abba! It is so hard to understand what even happened when Mary conceived of the Holy Spirit and bore the very Son of God.

I really can’t say that I understand it at all. But when I try to grasp all of its meaning, I am wonderstruck.

You, the Most High God became a Man, like any other and yet so unlike any other. Help me understand.

The story You have carved in history is wondrous. It is purely amazing. A rebellious people cast you away. A blind and deaf generation rejected you. Yet you sent your son, your only son, to die for us.

Forgive me when I think my sin is too great! Hold me and help me to trust you when I fear it is too much to ever comprehend. I can’t comprehend it fully, and I never will. But that’s okay.

Take my heart, it is thine own. Let it be thy royal Throne.”

Oh Father! How is it that you have sent Emmanuel, God with us? How can it be?

I surrender my heart, I will cling to it no longer. Reign in me, LORD. Reign in your rightful place.

Through your birth you have opened the way. Through the cross you sealed our salvation. You tore the veil from top to bottom. And now I can approach you Glorious Throne with boldness.

For you are mine, and you will hold me fast forever.

Dear Abba, when I think about tomorrow and all the surprises and stresses it holds my heart feels impatient and heavy.

Let me rest in you, right here, right now, for a moment longer. Let me glimpse the beauty of a Story never to be forgotten.

I don’t want anything to get in the way. Because you are most important in my life.

I am yours. You are mine. Your love is everlasting, you grace abounding, and as far as the east is from the west, so have you removed my sins from me.

I want to rejoice in you. I want to sing! For you alone are the fairest of all, my portion, and my strength, all the days of my life.

“Because your love is better than life, I will praise you. (Psalm 63:3)”

In Jesus’ name, Amen.


I hope you enjoyed! Have a wonderful and blessed Christmas Eve. Hopefully you’re not like me, and you have everything ready for Christmas.


Song of the Day: Christmas Dreams by Francesca Battistelli

I simply couldn’t resist sharing this one, even if it doesn’t match the overall mood of the post very well. 🙂 It’s one of my favorite Christmas Eve songs.


“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
forever.”

-Psalm 23:6 (ESV)

12 Days of Christmas | Day 10 | Word Study on “Reign”

Hello everyone! I’m a teeny bit late as usual. I don’t even want to think about all I need to get done tomorrow…yikes!

I’m not exactly sure why I decided to go with “reign” as my final word study with all the others to choose from, but it was one of the top ones and it felt like a good wrapping up place (*ahem* no reference to Christmas intended).

Speaking of which…I have yet to wrap any Christmas presents. But that’s kind off topic! Let’s talk about reign.

To change things up a little…let’s start with the Greek (New Testament).

Basileuó means to be King or to reign. A similar word is sumbasileuó meaning to reign with. Sumbasileuó is the word used in 2 Timothy 2:12 where it says:

“For if we died with Him, we will also live with Him;
If we endure, we will also reign with Him;
If we deny Him, He will also deny us;
If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.”

-2 Timothy 2:11-13

Another similar word is basileia which is means to sovereignty, kingdom or authority and usually refers to said sovereignty being in God’s hands. It is usually translated as kingdom. For instance:

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided to you.”

-Matthew 6:33

“So He was saying, “What is the kingdom of God like, and to what shall I compare it? It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and threw into his own garden; and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the sky nested in its branches.”

-Luke 13:18-19

“And He made us into a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”

-Revelation 1:6

Yet another variation of this word appears once in the Christmas story (according to Luke) and once in Revelations. The word is basileusei.

“And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and give birth to a son, and you shall name Him Jesus.

He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.”

-Luke 1:30-33

“Then the seventh angel sounded; and there were loud voices in heaven, saying,

“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever.”

-Revelation 11:15

Hégemonia is a noun that refers to “a reign.” For instance the hégemonia of Tiberus Caesar (as mentioned in Luke 3:1).

Archó means to reign over, but can also mean to begin.

For the Hebrew I’m going to try and focus on prophecies of Christ (rather than the recounting of all the reigns of random kings throughout the Old Testament).

I’ve chose four verse to go over one from the Psalms, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Micah.

“The LORD reigns, He is clothed with majesty;
The LORD has clothed and encircled Himself with strength.
Indeed, the world is firmly established; it will not be moved.”

-Psalm 93:1

The word for reign in this instance is malak meaning to be or become king (to reign). It occurs 348 times in the Old Testament and is used to describe when someone becomes king and to describe how Yahweh reigns forever and ever.

“How delightful on the mountains
Are the feet of one who brings good news,
Who announces peace
And brings good news of happiness,
Who announces salvation,
And says to Zion, “Your God reigns!”

-Isaiah 52:7

Isaiah uses the same word here as well (malak). I love how the hymn “Our God Reigns” incorporates this verse. It’s so beautiful.

“Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD,
“When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch;
And He will reign as king and act wisely
And do justice and righteousness in the land.”

-Jeremiah 23:5

Turns out the word used in Jeremiah is almost exactly the same with one minor difference. Insted of “malak” Jeremiah uses “umalak” which more specifically means that he “will reign.” I don’t know anything about Hebrew grammar, but I’m guessing this is the future tense of the same word (reigns=present, will reign=future).

“I will make those who limp a remnant,
And those who have strayed a mighty nation,
And the LORD will reign over them on Mount Zion
From now on and forever.”

-Micah 4:7

And as I was guessing Micah also uses umalak, or “will reign.”

YAHWEH is sovereign and YAHWEH is King of Kings, in the past, the present, and the future. But it seems Jeremiah and Micah in particular, looked forward to the reign of the perfect King over all those who are truly his people. They looked forward to the redemptive King, the one who would gather the Nobodies into a mighty nation and call it His own.

That King is Jesus, the One and Only Son of God and Son of Man and He is knocking on your heart even now, calling for you to surrender your broken heart to him and let him make it a mighty throne. He loves you more fully and truly than you can yet comprehend and brings healing in his reign. Let him reign in your heart.


Song of the Day: He Shall Reign Forevermore by Matt Maher

I’ve been looking forward to sharing this song with you. Matt Maher’s version is by far my favorite version. It’s awesome!


He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.”

-Luke 1:32-33

“For if we died with Him, we will also live with Him;
If we endure, we will also reign with Him;
If we deny Him, He will also deny us;
If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.”

-2 Timothy 2:11-13

12 Days of Christmas | Day 9 | In Which I Attempt to Write a Christmas Story

Hello everyone! Can you even believe that there is only 3 more days until Christmas!!?!?!? I’m starting to wonder if my to-do list is even capable of being completed. 🙄

Also…today I am going to try and write some flash fiction. I haven’t even decided what it will be about. Annd…I haven’t really written fiction since October maaybe early November. So I’m feeling kind of rusty and reluctant. Maybe a little bit of nonexistent writer’s block is in there as well??

To be completely honest I kind of hate (*ahem* I meant strongly dislike) my own writing currently, but I will try to just write SOMETHING and still share it. It’s a challenge, right? I can be competitive.

*rubs hands together*

*stares at remaining blank screen*

*begins staring at ceiling*

*glances back at computer*

Riight…so about that story…

Uuummm…I’ll be back. In a little bit. Just have to think for a while…

(This won’t really be that bad, right?)

*Ahem* I’m back again. Still not sure what I’m going to write, but I may as well write the first few sentences.

Once Upon a Time…

Kalea stared at her dim laptop screen in the darkness of the living room. Well…except for the Christmas lights in random corners of the room.

She continues to stare at her blank document. Somehow she could write analytical overviews for a living, yet she couldn’t manage to a single line of fiction.

I’m pretty sure my imagination no longer works.

Kalea’s friend Lissa, a budding entrepreneur, said she’d read somewhere that changes in environment sometimes helped with Writer’s Block.

So here she was. Instead of writing in a cheery office at 8 o’clock in the morning she was attempting to write at 10 o’clock at night. On her couch. Three days before her “unique” Christmas story was supposed to be finished. At least she wasn’t actually becoming a nightowl.

Somehow nighttime just wasn’t doing the trick in sparking her imagination.

Kalea pulled out her phone to message Lissa.

“Still trying to brainstorm ideas for that Christmas story I promised I’d write.”

A second later there was a ding. Well…to be exact it was a short portion of Carol of the Bells…you know cause everyone sets something like that for a notification ringtone.

Me too. Working on brainstorming a unique design for my business pitch a week from now”

Kalea sighed. There was a big difference between designing a product and writing a story. Not that she could do either. But writing a story should be easy…right?

“I’m actually getting pretty convinced that my imagination is dead. Like seriously.”

Kalea pressed send and turned her phone off. After staring into the distance for a while and thinking about everything else that needed to be done before Christmas, she got up from the couch. Definitely no words spouting out of her brain right now.

She walked into the dark kitchenette of her apartment and stared out the window lost in blank thought.

Literally all she wanted for Christmas was to finish this nonexistent story.

Somehow Lissa had an imagination but she didn’t. And while Lissa said she believed in God and Jesus and all that “church stuff,” she seemed to get really uncomfortable when Kalea talked about it.

Would her friends listen to her about Jesus if she could write stories? Since she’d become a Christian she’d found that even if her friends said they believed the same things as her, they never wanted to talk about it.

They like to read her reports though…and she thought they were more than “pretty” dry. They were horrid. Would they read a story?

Well if the Lord hadn’t given her an imagination, that wasn’t likely to work out. What was she supposed to do about the deadline? Ugh.

Kalea startled as she heard a knock on her window. On the fourth story. How was that even possible?

Was is a bird? It couldn’t possibly be Santa Claus…but maybe something else? Did someone try to jump off the roof? Did someone manage to climb a ladder or ride one of the lifter machine thingimajigs to knock on her window? What would they want?

She quickly reached for where she had set her phone when she came into the kitchenette and opend her Lissa’s contact.

“Umm…I think someone just knocked on my fourth story window.”

She texted frantically.

“Do you think it might be a thief? How would someone knock on a window that high up anyway?? Or could it somehow have been a bird…maybe the bird was looking at someone else??”

After a few seconds Lissa messaged her laughing emoji.

“What’s so funny?”

Kalea texted back.

“Read the text before your last two.”

Lissa replied almost instantly. Kalea scrolled up on her phone, still confused.

After a few long, drawn-out seconds Lissa offered a bit of an explanation.

“At first you were like ‘I don’t have an imagination’ then you’re like imagining all sorts of ways a knocking sound could have come from the direction of your window. 😀”

Waaait…what?

Kalea struggled to wrap her brain around it, but when she did she burst out laughing.

Texting back a cringing emoji and a laughing emoji, she looked around for her light up clock. She should probably keep brainstorming. Maybe she could manage to write at least one sentence.

I mean…it could even be about someone trying to knock on a fourth story window.

Kalea grinned.

Where is that clock anyway? She wondered peering closer at the wall it usually was.

Walking closer she realized it was face-down on the ground. Right by the window.

And that’s when she realized her imagination was most definitely not dead. Nothing had knocked against her fourth-story window. Her clock had fallen down.

The thought caused her to break down laughing.

And already a story was forming in her mind. Maybe even a story her friends would read. And think about.

Time to get writing.

THE END.


Okay that was actually fun once I got started. While that probably wasn’t very exceptional writing, I hope you enjoyed it too!

And seriously, the best solution to Writer’s Block is to write about Writer’s Block. Works pretty much every time. You should totally try it next time you just can’t seem to get any words on the page.

(I’m sorry it wasn’t as Christmasy as I was hoping!)

Also this is literally my absolute favorite example of writing about Writer’s Block. You’ve got to check it out.

Hope you enjoyed, see you tomorrow, and have an awesome and blessed Christmas!


Song of the Day:

I had a lot of trouble choosing this one today. On one hand, “3:42 AM (Writer’s Block)” by MercyMe seemed to match best. On the other hand…I was kinda going for Christmasy songs. So I guess I’ll have to pick two?

3:42 Am (Writer’s Block) by MercyMe

Be Born In Me by Francesca Battistelli (have you noticed I like Francesca Battistelli?😉).


“I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

-Philippians 3:14

“Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”

-James 1:12

“Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, set your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”

-1 Peter 1:13


*All scripture quotations are from the NASB translation

**Also…hoping there aren’t any super back typos cause I didn’t even really edit this one. 🙂

12 Days of Christmas | Day 8 | Encouragement and Exhortation for Christmas

Hello everyone and I am so sorry that I’m so late with this post…I was supposed to write it two days ago and but I got so busy on Sunday and then completely spaced out yesterday about it.

Because I’m so late this post will be short but sweet and you should expect another post today (the post that was actually supposed to be today).

I guess what I really want to offer is some encouragement. But I don’t want to follow all the repetitive cliché “lessons” for us based on the Christmas story. I want to offer real, heart-felt encouragement amid everything.

To be honest I’ve been really worn out and just plain tired around Christmas. And it’s not so much Christmas that makes me tired, but everything surrounding it.

Finals week. Election results. So much to do and see. Crowded stores. Every room is a “Santa’s Workshop.” Anticipation and dread. Concerts to play in and see. Cards to write and read. Catching up on everything you’ve procrastinated on. Fighting winter depression. Wondering if when this year ends and the New Year begins, we’ll have measured up to our own standard. Met our resolutions. Seen if we’re good enough.

It’s exhausting. And so complicated.

This year excluded, I’ve never really felt lonely at Christmas. And definitely not the whole “singles loneliness.” This year COVID and social distancing has made me a lonely already, but Christmas hasn’t made that any worse really.

It’s not loneliness I tend to deal with this time of year but bitterness, jealousy, discontentment, and self-hatred.

It’s almost funny how jealousy and self-hatred can go hand-in-hand. One is discontentment with others (particularly in comparison to others) and one is discontentment with oneself. And while discontentment with oneself can be beneficial if it lead to dependence on God, if it simply festers into bitterness it can be a whole lot worse.

Here are 10 of the things I’ve learned work and don’t work to keep bitterness and jealousy in check (particularly around Christmas). I hope you are both encouraged and exhorted by them.

1) Lowering your expectations of Christmas so you “won’t be disappointed” only temporarily subdues bitterness and jealousy.

2) Living out peace and kindness throughout the Christmas season and particularly on Christmas day does not just happen automatically. There is no “Christmas magic” that makes people get along better. If there is no work going into it, it’s just surface peace. Loving one another takes sacrifice and effort, even on Christmas day.

3) Understanding the difference between “I deserve to have whatever I want particularly if it’s small” and “I am loved by God who will give me whatever I truly need” is very important.

4) There is so much joy in pouring your heart into a gift for another person.

5) Perfect love casts out fear

6) Most of the time others don’t know when you’re feeling lonely, jealous for attention and love, and festering bitterness. With all the busyness surrounding Christmas it can be so hard to tell if a loved one is feeling neglected or ignored. When you recognize a root of jealousy or bitterness in yourself, often all it takes is a quick note to a friend or family member telling them that you are feeling lonely or isolated for them to realize this and help fill your cup back up. It’s not about demanding love, but about recognizing when and why you are sad then communicating it instead of resorting to bitterness or unkindness.

7) If you are just feeling grumpy or irritated and you can’t figure out why asking a friend or two to pray about it can really help you sort out your attitude. Admitting you have a bad attitude does wonders.

8) Loving others who are as broken as you (if not more broken on the outside) can not only work to heal and help them, but also to renew a right spirit within you and fill you with gratitude and hope in the midst of your bitterness.

9) Remember that every day is a gift. Enjoy every moment with you loved ones and focus on the important things instead of getting caught up in trivial arguments.

10) You are loved by God. Fully and utterly loved. You are special, you are beautiful, and you have been made perfect in God’s eyes by Jesus’ sacrifice if only you accept his beautiful gift of salvation. You are made in the image of God and don’t you ever forget that. If God says you are awesomely and wonderfully made, who are you to say otherwise? If God says there is hope for you, that even now He is working in you and sanctifying you, who are you to say otherwise.


“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

-Romans 8:37

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

-Romans 8:1

“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.”

-Psalm 139:14


Song of the Day: Heaven Everywhere by Francesca Battistelli


*All scripture quotations are from the ESV translation unless otherwise noted