Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Saturday 16 January |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Giuseppe Antonio Tovini
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

St. John of the Cross: Advent quotes for the Christmas blues

John of the Cross

Josefa de Óbidos | Public Domain

Tom Hoopes - published on 12/14/20

The great Spanish Carmelite has wisdom to help us through the tough parts of the season.

Depression at Christmastime is a real thing, whether it comes from financial stress, busyness, loneliness, grief, or estrangement.

The wisdom of the great Spanish Carmelite mystic St. John of the Cross, whose feast is celebrated December 14, can help you cope.

Praying in Darkness

“The endurance of darkness is the preparation for great light.”

This one is true of both the Advent darkness everyone feels, and the specific darkness you feel in your depression. Hold on. Christ is coming!

“It is best to learn to silence the faculties and to cause them to be still so that God may speak.”

A great reminder that, when you have nothing to say to God, he still wants to talk to you. In fact …

“What we need most in order to make progress is to be silent before this great God with our appetite and with our tongue, for the language he best hears is silent love.”

… the deprivation of the senses you feel in depression can be offered to God, fruitfully.

“Contemplation is nothing else but a secret, peaceful, and loving infusion of God, which if admitted, will set the soul on fire with the Spirit of love.”

If you have trouble praying, don’t worry. Just find a moment God to offer him your silent love.

Waiting in Loneliness

“Take God for your spouse and friend and walk with him continually, and you will not sin and will learn to love, and the things you must do will work out prosperously for you.”

If you are single by choice or by circumstances and Christmas is hard, remember what St. John says here.

“If you purify your soul of attachment to and desire for things, you will understand them spiritually. If you deny your appetite for them, you will enjoy their truth, understanding what is certain in them.”

This is for all those who aren’t expecting to get much for Christmas!




Read more:
How St. John Henry Newman’s meditation helps me through depression

Living For Others

“Beloved, all that is harsh and difficult I want for myself, and all that is gentle and sweet for thee.”

Words for a Christmas mom to try out, if no one is helping like they should (but don’t be afraid to let them know how they should help).

“It is great wisdom to know how to be silent and to look at neither the remarks, nor the deeds, nor the lives of others.”

A reminder to avoid gossip at the office Christmas party!

“In the dark night of the soul, bright flows the river of God.”

If you are depressed at Christmas, think of God as the Christmas star — or string of lights — whose light is out there whether you see it now or not.

“In the evening of life, we will be judged on love alone.”

Christmas is a time to give — gifts, time and love. And giving remains the best antidote to depression.




Read more:
St. Therese of Lisieux and fighting the Christmas Blues

Tags:
Saints
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
DAD, HOW DO I?
Cerith Gardiner
Meet the dad who's teaching basic skills on Y...
FORGIVING COUPLE
Bret Thoman, OFS
An exorcist teaches 4 steps to forgive
Philip Kosloski
What is the Holy Cloak of St. Joseph?
LUXOR FILM FESTIVAL
Zoe Romanowsky
20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful...
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Why God loves ordinary stuff: Pope Francis' r...
POPE FRANCIS; Ash Wednesday
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Vatican: Imposition of ashes on Ash Wednesday...
D'CRUZ FAMILY
Cerith Gardiner
Meet the family of 12 siblings with a very sp...
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.