Coffee Shops, Frank Sinatra, and Immanuel

Christmas is a season of shining lights, glittery ornaments, and glowing candles.  We celebrate Jesus’ coming as the light of the world, but it can be a dark season, a time of tears for some whose hearts are still tender from a recent loss.  Even if we’re not feeling the “Christmas joy,”  God is right there with us.  Today I’m sharing a story about loss and comfort written by Brockie, one of the women in my prayer group.


Ever have those moments that come from nowhere. You know, those moments of grief and loss that are overwhelming, and you couldn’t have seen them coming from a hundred miles away?  I had one of those today in the coffee shop.  Frank Sinatra music was playing, and I found myself lost in my dad’s voice, singing with his quartet . . .

“and then I go and say something stupid like I love you.”

brockie and dad

I sat with my three-year-old daughter by my side, wishing Dad was here to hear her sing “Away in a Manger” a hundred times this season.  I kept thinking how much he would love to watch my high-school-aged daughter make that left handed lay up that looks so smooth in her basketball games.

How proud Dad would be of the older boys and their academic accomplishments, as well as the wonderful young men they have become (all the while wearing the great socks that he would give them at Christmas time).  So if this is your first Christmas without a loved one or your 50th, I pray you will find the words of Isaiah, repeated by Matthew to be comforting:

The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God with us’).   Matthew 1:23   NIV

May you find God’s presence near to you in the middle of your grief and sorrow, and may you know you are not alone.  Blessings!


Photos by Barb Briggs

Posted on December 9, 2013, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Thanks for sharing Brockie’s story, it’s one people need to hear. For a run of about ten years there was one loss after another, until I am now almost “that” generation. Finally new family members were added, children by marriage and by birth, and the sadness was balanced with blessing. The holidays can be lonely, but the joy is that God IS with us always. Sometimes I forget to call out to Him, that’s all.

  2. Inspired and pretty

    A beautiful post Constance. I’m experiencing something very difficult right now but unfortunately can’t find the presence of God near.
    Thank you for sharing these beautiful words.

    • Jocelyne, I’m so sorry you are going through such difficult times. It’s hard when we don’t feel God’s presence. Sometimes I hear or see or read something that speaks to my heart when I’m hurting. Sometimes I have to take it on faith that God cares: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness” (Jeremiah 3:13).
      My prayer for you is that you will know how much you are loved by God, and that God may resolve the problem or help you walk through it. The women in my prayer group and I will pray for you this week.

      • Inspired and pretty

        Constance, how kind of you… I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
        I know God loves me, I just can’t feel him right now and I know it is because I’m hurting. Thank you again Constance.

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