It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving has come & gone & December is already here. The hustle and bustle of the holidays is upon us and in my mind I start thinking, “Let the craziness and stress begin.” I’d like to think I’ve gotten a bit smarter/wiser as I’ve gotten a bit older (not that I’m that old!) and I try to do a bit of Christmas shopping all year long so I don’t feel as frazzled come December. But undoubtedly there are always those last minute gifts, the cards, the neighbor gifts/treats, Christmas parties and gatherings, etc. that always seem to add to all the stress. I’m sure you experience similar things during the month of December.
But I hope as things get busy and you’re running around getting things prepared for Christmas, you’ll also take the time to remember the reason for this time of year. I honestly get a bit frustrated with the commercialization of everything and wish more focus would be on the true meaning of the holiday – and that of course, is the birth of our Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ. I’m sure you’ve seen the signs people have in their homes around this time of year that say “Believe.” While I’m sure it’s referring to believing in Santa or the magic of Christmas – I like to think of it as “Believe” – as in believe in Jesus Christ. Believe in Him. Trust in Him. Love Him & follow Him. I know that by so doing, we can only find happiness and peace. Thomas S. Monson said, “There is no better time than now, this very Christmas season, for all of us to rededicate ourselves to the principles taught by Jesus Christ.”
I’m sure you’ve all seen or read this saying before – but it is so true:
You could also say “We need His (Jesus Christ’s) presence, more than presents.” And this awesome quote my good friend Hank Smith posted recently on his Facebook wall goes right along with it.
So my message this month is simple. I would encourage you to take time each day to try do something that will help you feel His presence. Focus on those things that are important – your family & friends. If it means neglecting some of the things I mentioned above (last minute gifts, sending out tons of cards, etc.) then so be it.
I love how in the video the kids talk about what they would “give” this year. Things were said like, “I’m going to stop yelling at people while I’m driving.” “I’m going to be nice to the shy guy.” “I’m going to say nice things to people I don’t know.” “I’m going to smile at people.” I believe these type of gifts are exactly the kind of gifts we should be giving – not just in December, but all year long. These are the best kind of presents, because they don’t come from the store — they come from our hearts. I know as we give these kind of “presents” to others, our lives are blessed & we will definitely feel of His presence.
I hope in this season of giving that we can
keep Christ in our hearts – and in Christmas.
And as always – no matter where you are, or what you believe, we hope your Sunday is full of Sunshine! To read more about what we believe, you can go here.
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