Sunday, December 23, 2012

Lonely Around the Holidays? Some Ideas

I am one of those people who needs a good dose of "alone time" each day to recharge my batteries, but I need contact with others as well.  We all do.  That is the way we are made - in the image of God, Who is a Communion of Love.  Some years, when the kids are away for longer than usual and I find myself on a break from work, I have felt the pains of loneliness.  This year I am staring down a week like that between Christmas and New Year, but am hoping for a more positive experience.

What gives me the most hope is that I have just been more aware of God's presence lately.  I will walk down the hall at work and realize how perfect the moment is, "God, You are with me right now.  I have everything I could ever want; You are more than enough."  I have tried to take some moments of silence to simply sit in God's presence too, to just enjoy His nearness.  I think God's nearness is the perfect foundation to overcome loneliness; but I realize that when I am by myself for an extended period, my emotions may try to "shout over" the theological facts.  I had some ideas about other practical things I can do to overcome loneliness and thought they might work for others too:

  • Attend daily Mass on the mornings of vacation
  • Schedule lunch dates with people I haven't seen in awhile, or would like to know better.
  • Get out of the house, even if flying solo, and visit fun public places - the art museum for instance.
  • Bundle up and do some vigorous walking or hiking. 
  • Try to pray all five daily portions of the Liturgy of the Hours, the "public prayer of the Church," next week (click the above link to find it online).

Whatever we decide to do, or wherever we decide to go, lets remember that God goes with us; we celebrate the birth of Emmanuel.

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