Love sweetens everything.

Some of us look forward to the holiday season. We enjoy the trappings, the get-togethers, the special food, the music, and the backstories.

Others of us dread the holidays. They may bring painful reminders of loved ones not present with us, whether passed or otherwise absent. We may fear unpleasant personal interactions. We may feel the prevailing bonhomie is artificial, adopted for only a few days and then rapidly dropped.

Whether we savor these days or regret them, one thing is certain. Love—love from us for ourselves and others, love from others for themselves and us—will help make whatever goes on be more enjoyable.

When we give ourselves and others grace in what potentially can be a high-stress time, we put caring first. If we bring good will to already pleasant interactions, we amplify the seasonal beauty.

Today’s message reminds me to offer liberal applications of love to any and all situations. The love I offer spreads out and around all of Creation, returning to me as well.

Please reflect and share. How might love deepen your appreciation and enjoyment of the holidays?