Jennifer, an aspiring, struggling chef, takes a food preparation position in a nice restaurant with the hope of becoming their chef with her mother’s Christmas recipes. One evening she meets the picky manager with a chip on his shoulder, who is secretly the owner and a millionaire. He smiles at her, but she ignores him because of his attitude. Their story continues to unwind, and their relationship begins to flourish. This is one of the plots to a Hallmark movie. It leaves us with the hope that somehow our challenges in life and love will magically all change when we meet the right man.

These movies make many women feel happy. However, for abused women, these movies reveal how different their reality is especially during the Holidays. With all the financial stress and the expectation to be kind and full of cheer, the abuser becomes more explosive. Their trigger buttons are more sensitive and unpredictable which makes the Holidays uncertain for their victims.

You Can Create Wonderful Moments

Even though these are some of the realities victims face during the Holiday Season, I am here to share how I made Hallmark moments for myself and my children in an abusive marriage. I knew it was too dangerous for me to leave during the Holidays, so I decided to make great moments when I could, and you can too!

Every day you use your power to make decisions, both big and small. To make Hallmark moments for you and your children, you’ll have to decide to focus on the reason for Christmas—the hope and love of Jesus Christ. In this mindset of Christ’s hope and reality, find times when you’re by yourself and take a walk where Christmas lights and decorations abound. Visit your favorite tea or coffee shop and tell Jesus what you are thankful for. Focus only on why you love him. Thank him for his faithfulness never to leave you, as he lives in you. Thank him for coming to earth and becoming the Savior of your sins and the Savior for your future. Thank him for giving you wisdom, discernment, strength, and the power to choose his love and way of life. Thank him for helping you find your healing path in him, even if you don’t see one right now. Let all your gratefulness remind you that Jesus Christ is bigger than your circumstances and feelings. He is your Savior, and he will make way for you to live safe, secure, and loved!

Create Joyous Moments with Your Children

You can also create these empowering Hallmark moments with your children when you are alone with them over a cup of cocoa or a scoop of ice cream. Tell each child the characteristics you cherish about them. Ask them what they have been thankful for today. Ask them what they dream of for their future and just listen. Ask them what the birth of Jesus means to them. Don’t allow the conversation to focus on the pain in your lives but don’t dismiss it. Bring your discussion back to the fact that God raised Jesus from the dead and he can also change their lives as they partner with Jesus.

No imperfect person can live a Hallmark life. However, we all have the ability and power to decide to make Hallmark moments. Focus your precious moments on Jesus Christ your Savior, who came to earth give you hope and strength. Rest in him where you are and know that he loves you. Seek him to find your healing path and overcome the abuse and other challenges in our life. Start today by planning your Hallmark moments, and you will find the joy of Jesus in your Christmas Season!

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