As we near Christmas and it’s beautiful spirit, I am taken back to the Christmas of 2002 when my husband was dying of Cancer. I recently finished writing a book about our experience, so it’s fresh in my mind again right now. We were somehow Encircled in Love in the Midst of Loss. Here’s that account from my book. Notice how a lot of people did something small to make a BIG DIFFERENCE in our lives.
” That Christmas season held so much love and meaning for us. We felt encircled in love and supported on every
side. Many people performed kind acts of service on our behalf, but one really stands out in my mind. For 25 days in a row from Dec. 1 to Christmas, an anonymous package arrived on our doorstep at night. We never found out who did it, but I believe it may have been organized by our family physician. We also think it was a different family that brought a gift each night. The gift was usually food—something that was easy to prepare, such as cans of stew and corn muffin mix. It gave us something to look forward to each day, helped with meal preparation, and made me feel secure as I added to our food storage. A few times, we even got presents for family members.
When we arrived home on Christmas from visiting family, the porch was piled with goodies, presents, a Christmas dinner, and even a new outfit for me. These daily surprises represented help, hope, joy, and a feeling of love and support during a difficult time. We loved watching for the gifts in anticipation, but since I knew they were supposed to be anonymous, I told the kids not to open the door until a few seconds after the bell; however, our boys wanted the fun of trying to catch the giver when I wasn’t there to stop them. One night, they laid in wait, opening the door as quickly as possible when they heard the knock, catching two other little boys trying to leave their “anonymous” gift. My boys were elated at catching the givers, but the little boys cried because they had been caught. My boys nearly cried when I sat them down on the couch and gave them a stern “talking to.” They got a worse scolding another time. When they opened the door and saw a food they didn’t like, they let it be known. Loudly. I was horrified and worried that the giver may not have run away before hearing the unappreciated disappointment of my boys. They got a big lecture on gratitude, appreciation, and good manners, that’s for sure!”
Oh how these special, nightly surprises lifted us! It was fun and we looked forward to it with much anticipation. The gifts were helpful, especially the food. Although it was the “loot” which filled our tummies, it was THE LOVE left on our porch that filled out hearts, lightened our burdens, and made us feel encircled in support.
I pray that you feel Encircled in Love from Heaven and earth this Christmas season. I hope that you will be that encircling for others. Reach for Support, Reach to Grow (especially closer to the Savior), and Reach to Serve this Christmas season.
JoLyn Olsen Holladay
p.s. I am quickly signing and sending out the books that were pre-purchased. I have a few extra copies from that first shipment. If you would like a personally signed copy of the book, you can order one at https://essentialanswers.me/product/encircled-in-love-by-jolyn-olsen-holladay/ The book will soon be available on EncircledInLove.com through Amazon in both print and kindle versions.
If you would like to see or share ideas on healthy grieving, please see #MondayMourning or #GriefSupport (posted each Monday) on my Facebook page: Above and Beyond Mentoring with JoLyn Holladay
You will also find a weekly Mentor Moment video clip or Facebook live of empowerment, inspirational notes and quotes, and my upcoming events. Speaking of which, my last, live event of the season, Vision Boards level 2, is this Thursday Dec. 6, 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m., at the Business Resource Center of Davis Tech, 450 Simmons Way, Kaysville, UT 84037. Here’s the link to pre-register, save $10. We only have 5 seats left. https://essentialanswers.me/product/vision-board-part-2/
I will be hosting an on-line Vision Board Bootcamp in between Christmas and New Years to get you set up for success. Stay tuned to my Facebook page Above and Beyond Mentoring with JoLyn Holladay for the announcement.
Last of all, you may take advantage of today’s CHRISTMAS BUNDLE which includes:
- A 1 hour Mentoring session (Dream Coach Call, Problem Solve it, Healthy Grieving, or Mastermind) $100 value
- My Six Secrets to Make your Dreams Come True Audio $25 value
- A personally signed copy of my book Encircled in Love in the Midst of Loss $15
- My Creating an AM/PM schedule of Empowerment Audio download $15
- and a 30 minute ACCOUNTABILITY CALL reporting on your action steps from your Mentoring session $50
- This bundle is over $200 in value for only $147 through Dec. 8th, 2018 and can be a tax deduction!