Last week, as my personal traditions dictate, we put up our Christmas trees and decorations on the Friday after Thanksgiving. That evening, we learned that my husband’s work partner had been killed in a car accident, leaving behind 4 children aged 3 weeks to about 10 years. We were sorrowful and very concerned for the family. Obviously, we didn’t get the decorating done like normal! Shopping – never my favorite thing anyway – was stressing me out because all the sales were going on and I wanted desperately to catch a few. I was becoming consumed over the death of this friend, worrying about money, trying to get my thoughts (and house!) organized.
On Sunday. I was almost finished setting up our Nativity when some friends came by. They invited us to watch this short little video called “He is the Gift”, so of course, we did. Honestly, I didn’t “feel in the mood” when we started, but I was so thankful I had agreed to watch it by the time it was over! The Spirit of this beautful video is so strong! I felt such a sweet, calm peace when it was over. In all the uncertainty of life over the weekend, the pressure to be sure to catch that sale, the desire to have a beautifully decorated house, I had temporarily forgotten the reason for it.
Jesus is THE Gift and through His atonement and grace, He has given me everything I really want and need.
Now that the atmosphere is set, I can concentrate on all the sweet traditions that help us to focus on Him during this season: singing carols, reading scriptures about His life and mission, participating in our daily advent calendar, baking cookies for friends and neighbors, enjoying our Advent wreath and candles, the wonderful Christmas Eve dinner and the appearance of the baby Jesus to sleep in the manger filled with straw placed one piece at a time for each act of service given, received, or observed. These are some of the things that I do to share the gift with my children and friends.
Here is a link to the video:
http://www.mormon.org/christmas – click the “view video” button.
Please watch it and let me know in the comments how you Share the Gift.