When Christmas is Hard

By   •   November 19, 2010

In the middle of the “most wonderful time of the year,” many of you are facing a dilemma or difficulty. You may have a strained relationship with one or multiple family members. Perhaps you’re lonely or grieving a loss and the holidays are particularly painful for you. Or, this is the busiest time of the year and you dread the rat race that often accompanies this season.

Whatever the case may be, we want to provide you with resources to help guide you through this season’s difficulties in a biblical way. Below, you will find some family- and holiday-related questions people have asked Billy Graham over the years, along with his answers.

Help the Lonely
This Christmas was very hard for me. Most of my relatives are gone now (including my husband), and the few I do have are either too old or live too far away, so I was completely alone. Please tell people to reach out to lonely people during holidays, because it’s hard for them.
Be a friend »

Can’t Afford Gifts
My husband lost his job recently and we really can’t afford to give people as much for Christmas this year as we have in the past. But I’m afraid we’ll offend them if we cut back too much. I know this isn’t a spiritual question, but how should we handle this?
Don’t go into debt »

Hectic Holidays
I know Christmas is still some weeks away, but I’m already getting uptight about it. It’s always such a hectic time and we always end up spending far more than we planned to. To be honest, I don’t really enjoy Christmas any more, although I know I ought to. Any suggestions?
Make Christmas meaningful »

Wayward Children
Our son will be coming home from college for the Christmas holidays, and the last time he was here he let it be known that he didn’t believe in God like he used to. We ended up in a big argument because we couldn’t answer his questions, but we don’t want that to happen again.
Show the love of Christ »

Influence Neighbors for Christ
Our neighbors really get into Christmas in a big way—lots of decorating, parties, expensive gifts and so forth. But to them it’s just a time to have family fun, with no religious meaning. How can we get them thinking about the real meaning of Christmas?
Pray for them »

Teach Children the Real Meaning of Christmas
Our two children are getting very excited about Christmas right now (which is understandable, of course). But how can we help them also see the real meaning of Christmas, without sounding like we’re against all the things that excite them about the holidays?
Start today »

Overcome Family Disagreements
Many years ago, my sister and I had a sharp disagreement about something and haven’t talked to each other since. But recently I realized this wasn’t the way God wanted me to act, and since then I’ve tried to reach out to her (without success). My Christmas card to her even came back unopened and refused. Should I just give up?
Hope for change »

Holiday Time Demands From Family
Christmas is still months away but I’m already dreading it. The problem is that we never get to have our own Christmas as a family, because our relatives insist we spend the entire time with them. I’m exhausted by the time we get through with all the travel and emotional tensions. I don’t see any way to break this cycle, but maybe you have some ideas.
Plan carefully »

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  1. Internet@BGEA says:

    Dear Bonnie, We would like to pray and provide some encouragement in reference to this Difficult time you are going through. Please call 1-877-247-2426 to talk and pray with someone. There are people here who care. Or, you can send a private email to help@bgea.org. We will continue to keep you in prayer. The BGEA Internet team.

  2. Sterling says:

    I just want to thank Dr. Graham, Franklin and their entire family for the great work they have done in ministry and advancing the kingdom agenda. The sermons and other outreaches are a blessing and only HEAVEN will be able to measure the true impact and souls saved. Should these words reach you I say I'm thankful for all you done! Glory to God!

  3. Caroline says:

    Thank you Billy Graham for being a light in this dark world. Many blessings to you and yours.

  4. Bonnie says:

    This year will be the first year we will be spending Christmas with little food, no heat , no money for presents, and the last time we will be in our home due to foreclosure. My husband and I lost our jobs and haven't been able to find another one. My husband is recovering from cancer and we have a mountain of doctor bills. We are a Christian family and I know God is in control, but I'm just not sure how we are gonna make it. PLEASE HELP!

  5. Candace says:

    I am encouraged to have this post come up during the week of our little girl's 6th birthday, who went to live with Jesus a few months ago. I am thankful that God uses our family to pour into other people, who don't have a large family like ours. I am seeking with JESUS' help to pour into love cups, since He fills me to overflowing during this joyful time of Thanksgiving week.

  6. Jean says:

    The depression mounts this time of year.. My son and daughter do not have anything to do with each other and it has been that way for years now. They both live close to me, but we have to have separate holidays. I have tried to change this without any success at all.

  7. Ramona says:

    My one son passed away 6 years ago, the other is married and lives near me. The other 2 sons live 2000 miles away. One of which is in prison now 20 years. My money is poor. How would you deal with this? I do what I need to put a smile on my face and go forward. Inside I don't feel like it so much.

  8. Phill says:

    I want to thank you Rev Graham plain and simple :O) god bless you.

  9. Jeff says:

    As one who is fiercely struggling with a marital separation right now, I truly appreciate this article about the holidays being hard. I place my faith and trust in Christ alone to see me through. God bless you brother.

  10. Elaine says:

    God Bless you Billy Graham, thank you for answering God's call to come to Australia in 1959. Praise the Lord, God drew me to Himself and my life was changed through your message in Sydney of 'Naman'.God's Grace has allowed me to teach Scripture in NSW state schools for over 33 years, looking forward to NEW teaching material nest year, Praise the LORD FOR WHAT HE HAS DONE. HAPPY BIRTHDAY.