In reality, Christmas challenges our hearts


This article appeared in the Centre Daily Times on Dec. 21, 2011.

There are many brokenhearted in our community.

Many are walking around with shattered hearts. You can’t tell it from the outside — we have smiles on our faces and clothes on our backs. We have games on our smartphones and presents in the mail. Our talk is sophisticated and our schedules are full.

But we’re hurting on the inside. We just won’t admit it.

Christmas is the perfect time to tear open the wrapping, break the adhesive, lay the pieces on the table. Christmas is the perfect time to get real because our hobbled hearts won’t hold, no matter how much tape and ribbon we try.

This honesty runs contrary to what’s expected. We’re supposed to tinsel up, wear a bow, look our shiniest. Profess goodwill, sing a carol, bake some cookies. Why? Because it’s Christmas — and everyone wants a happy holiday.

But what if we changed Christmas this year? What if we unwrapped our hearts and placed them on the table? What if we didn’t care that they were broken?

You see, Christmas is not about putting on a show, it’s about drawing near. At the original Christmas, God came to Earth. He came to a pregnant teenager and her unemployed fiancé. He came to a stable and a manger, to shepherds and to sheep. It wasn’t shiny or pretty.

So where do we get the idea that we have to be?

Probably the worst we can do this Christmas is to throw some sugar and spice and act all nice and dangle some twinkling lights and pretend every-thing’s OK. The worst we can do is parade in the pageant when our hearts are broken.

Because that won’t get us anywhere. It’s more of the same fluff and icing.

Instead, let’s have a real Christmas. God came to Earth. Now He wants to come to you. May you lay down your shattered pieces so God can put them back together.

Chris Heinz is the Founder and CEO of Munyay, which creates coaching tools to help you love your life and work. He's also the Vice President of Human Resources for EnergyCAP, Inc. and is an Associate Certified Coach with the International Coach Federation, a Certified Professional Life Coach, and a Certified Gallup Strengths Coach. Chris enjoys coaching people, writing, and speaking on the topics of engagement, coaching, and strengths. He blogs often at

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6 thoughts on “In reality, Christmas challenges our hearts

  1. Great stuff, Chris!
    Thanks for sharing, and thrilled this is in the CDT. May many people read it and allow God to change them!

  2. The tragedy of Penn State is only a glimmer of the sexual deviation and devastation of a nation dying with out Christ.. I am thankful to have been a small part of helping pray not only for Penn State but for our nation thru this trouble time. You have echoed what God has been speaking to my heart for over the last 5 plus years.. about MY sexual purity (which I m still struggling with) and with taking the plank from my eye to be effective to others through prayer and example.. God be with you and your staff.. Thanks for being an obedient servant of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.. ” Peace on Earth and mercy mild, saint and sinner reconciled.” Joyful, Joyful,in the Hope of the World!!!

  3. Deborah, Thank you so much for joining us and for praying from your own struggles. There is identification and authority that way.

  4. Thank you for sharing these stories. That really hits home and please keep us in prayer.

    I spoke to you today from Usairways to change some tickets.

  5. Zoila, so glad you made it to! I felt God nudge me to invite you to visit. We’ll keep you in prayer. Bless you.