I moved from broken to beautiful, and you can too. I’ve endured many challenges and trials in my lifetime and have experienced fear, anger, discouragement, depression, and at times even despair. I struggled to forgive God and those who hurt me. I understand those emotions. Through those difficulties, God gave me a compassion for people and a desire to help others move from broken to beautiful.

No Christmas Family Reunion for Me

No Christmas Family Reunion for Me

“I don’t want to go to the Christmas family reunion, Ms. Ortega,” Julia told me in my counseling office. ...

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Ninguna Reunión de Familia para Mí

Ninguna Reunión de Familia para Mí

“No quiero ir a la reunión de familia, Srta. Ortega,” Julia me dijo en mi oficina de consejera. Las ...

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When Christmas Is Hard

When Christmas Is Hard

Have you lost a loved one or been through a divorce? Have you faced a major move or the ...

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How Quiet Is Your Life?

How Quiet Is Your Life?

Psalm 23:2b: “He leads me beside quiet waters.” “December is already here,” Ann said. I need to decorate the house, ...

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¿Qué Tranquila Es Tu Vida?

¿Qué Tranquila Es Tu Vida?

Salmo 23:2b: “Junto a tranquilas aguas me conduce.” “Ya está aquí el mes de diciembre,” Ana dijo. “Necesito decorar la ...

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Category Archives: Yvonne Ortega

No Christmas Family Reunion for Me

Yvonne Ortega 3 FINAL “I don’t want to go to the Christmas family reunion, Ms. Ortega,” Julia told me in my counseling office. Her hands trembled as she spoke and unbuttoned her sweater.

“What makes you say that?” I asked as I looked into her blue eyes.

“My mom and dad will argue most of the day. My aunt Mary won’t speak to my aunt Dorothy, and each will act as if the other one isn’t there.”

Julia’s facial muscles tightened as she discussed the family dynamics. I waited to hear what else she might say.

“That’s only half of the story.” Julia sat in silence for a minute and stared out the window. “My sister expects everyone to do what she wants, or she will get angry, curse, and cut them out of her life. My uncle Charlie will get drunk and misbehave.”

In my experience as a counselor, I’ve heard similar stories. Perhaps you feel like Julia and don’t want to go to your Christmas family reunion either.

You can write a list of the pros and cons of attending and then decide. You can consider other ways to spend Christmas day.

If your family members want to know why you won’t attend the family reunion, tell them you want a peaceful Christmas or have other plans.

You can invite good friends and neighbors to your home for a peaceful Christmas dinner.

Psalm 34:14b: “Seek peace and pursue it.”

Dear God, I want Christmas to be peaceful not hostile. Amen.

Application: What will you do this week to “seek peace and pursue it”?

Copyright © by Yvonne Ortega December 15, 2014

When Christmas Is Hard

Christmas Star Night Light at the cove

Have you lost a loved one or been through a divorce? Have you faced a major move or the loss of a job? Have you received a diagnosis of a life-threatening illness or made a significant change in your lifestyle? If you answered, “Yes,” to any one of these questions, Christmas may be a struggle…Continue Reading

How Quiet Is Your Life?

Vail, CO Betty Ford Botanical Garden Rocks

Psalm 23:2b: “He leads me beside quiet waters.” “December is already here,” Ann said. I need to decorate the house, mail the Christmas cards, and make cookies.” She stopped for a moment to catch her breath. She placed a hand on her forehead and said, “I haven’t bought a single Christmas present yet.” I continued…Continue Reading

¿Qué Tranquila Es Tu Vida?

Vail, CO Betty Ford Botanical Garden Rocks

Salmo 23:2b: “Junto a tranquilas aguas me conduce.” “Ya está aquí el mes de diciembre,” Ana dijo. “Necesito decorar la casa, mandar las tarjetas de Navidad, y hacer las galletas.” Paró por un momento para recuperar su aliento. Puso una mano sobre la frente y dijo, “No he comprado ningún regalo de Navidad todavía.” Continué…Continue Reading