Never compare your insides to everyone’s outsides.Anne Lamott
One year, two Christmas cards were returned to me. I googled the addresses and both houses had been sold. Both couples were empty nesters—one new and one old. Had they downsized?
After more searching—including using my sister’s Facebook account—I discovered that one couple had divorced. I thought they were an incredibly happy couple with well-adjusted adult children. According to their previous Christmas letter, all family members were pursuing their dreams. I didn’t know that one person dreamed of a divorce.
The trail of the other couple was cold. Given the other news, I feared the worst. I eventually learned my friends had bought a bigger house—the better to hold new in-laws and future grandchildren.
I have learned that people or families or marriages too good to be true are too good to be true. (See here.) Therefore, should I be shocked when the families I envied are broken?
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,Romans 8:23
My comparisons are bad enough, but they are even worse when my standard is a Christmas letter.
Do Christmas letters encourage you or discourage you?