This site uses cookies to provide you with more responsive and personalized service and to collect certain information about your use of the site.  You can change your cookie settings through your browser.  If you continue without changing your settings, you agree to our use of cookies.  See our Privacy Policy for more information.

Unwrapped - The Gifts of Christmas - A glittery silver Christmas ornament and a silver ribbon. with white and red lettering. Unwrapped - The Gifts of Christmas - A glittery silver Christmas ornament and a silver ribbon. with white and red lettering.

Unwrapped and Unraveling: How to Find Rest at Christmas

  • December 2021 Issue

A Woman thoughtfully looking outside

  • I can't do another Christmas alone.
  • Life isn't the same since my loved one passed away.
  • God, when will I get a break?
  • How am I going to tell the kids we can't afford any gifts this year?

These are just a few of the questions that might be on your mind this holiday season. While we know this is supposed to be a season of joy and celebration because Christ our King was born, we may find ourselves struggling.

With divided opinions regarding vaccines, race, masks, socioeconomics, and sexuality, we are living in a state of constant conflict. Plus, we are experiencing all of this on top of the natural pain and demands of life (and. life during a pandemic).

If we tried to describe how we are feeling—mentally, emotionally, and spiritually—we might compare it to the piles of crumpled paper left behind from a child who has just finished opening a Christmas gift. We are unwrapped and unraveling.

How do we navigate life in this pressure-cooker culture? How do we find peace when we feel like we are never enough? Well, our Savior provides the answer. Jesus, whose birth we celebrate, makes this clear and bold declaration to answer our hearts’ call. He says:

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matt. 11:28–30).

Even when our mental and emotional doors seem to be coming off the hinges, our Savior calls to us in a gentle yet firm voice. He says, “Come to me...I will give you rest.” We crave rest. Our minds, emotions, and bodies demand it. The answer is found in following Jesus.

Your mental and emotional health are as important to God as your spiritual health because they are all connected to Him. Dane Ortlund provides a wonderful description of Jesus in his book Gently and Lowly when he says, "Jesus is not trigger-happy. Not harsh, reactionary, easily exasperated. He is the most understanding person in the universe. The posture most natural to him is not a pointed finger but open arms.”

The answer to the stresses we are experiencing can only be found in Jesus. We have a Savior who knows our struggles. He knows what you are experiencing, and He loves you. True comfort and rest can only be found in Him. If you are struggling this Christmas, find rest in knowing Jesus.

For more information on how to begin a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, visit:

If you would like to talk to someone right now about how to know Him, please call toll-free 888-NEED HIM (888) 633-3446.

BY Ashanti Pettaway

Ashanti Pettaway is an alum of Moody Bible Institute and Chapman Scholar, currently pursuing his MA in Clinical Mental Health and Counseling. He is a loving husband to Amanda Raquel, and a father of three beautiful children, Joseph, Angel (who is with the Lord), and Samuel. He is passionate about seeing people healed mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.

Find Journal Content by Date