And so another Christmas season begins. It has been rung in, as it was in years passed, with stores sales and hurried holiday shoppers.
But long ago, in a country across the sea, the Birth of the Lord was joyously announced by a choir of heavenly hosts singing “Hosanna!”
In your rush to find the prefect gift, take a moment to pause and think about the most precious and perfect gift God gave to the world, that of His only Begotten Son.
“1. We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing; He chastens, and hastens his will to make known; The wicked oppressing now cease from distressing. Sing praises to his name; He forgets not his own.
2. Beside us to guide us, our God with us joining, Ordaining, maintaining his kingdom divine; So from the beginning the fight we were winning; Thou, Lord, wast at our side; All glory be thine!
3. We all do extol thee, thou leader triumphant, And pray that thou still our defender wilt be. Let thy congregation escape tribulation; Thy name be ever praised! O Lord, make us free!”
Prayer of Thanksgiving – LDS Hymnbook
This is a song of Thankgiving. For me, music is a big part of my life. No, don’t play an instrument, but I love to sing.
In Doctrine and Covenants 25:12 as revealed through the Prophet Joseph Smith, it says: “12 For my soul in the of the ; yea, the of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.”
The Lord loves to hear from us, whether it be a righteous song or a humble prayer. So lift up your voice, talk to Him, sing for Him. He created your voice so let Him hear it.
Winter: It’s bitter wind chills you and freezes your bones. The very thought of leaving your heated home and travelling through the cold is disparaging. So why does it happen? Why does the world need to freeze once a year?
Similarly, why is death apart of life? Why should good things come to an end?
Life is hard. It can be bitter as well. As bitter as the wind on a cold winter’s night. It is filled with sorrow and loss. But… we need not be so single minded about it.
In the winter, the world turns white. White like the pure soul that enters into God’s presence after the seasons of life are past and gone. But this is not the end, just as winter begats spring, so to does death through the Atonement of Jesus Christ begat new life in the resurrection. Believe in the Savior. He wishes and wants happiness and life for you. You accept only accept Him, love Him, and do as He would, then you shall have eternal life.
Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going after this life?
Are these questions you’ve ever thought about? Well, the answers can be found if you look in the right place.
God has a plan for you. It was made before you were born and it continues after you die. He wants you to be happy and gain eternal joy. He loves you, no matter what you’ve done in the past, He loves you all the same. You need only follow Him and keep His commandments. As you do, you’ll begin to understand God’s love for you and you’ll experience greater joy in this life and in the life to come.
Everywhere you look in today’s world, there are people trying to define what beauty is. You must have a certain hair cut, be a certain weight or height, have the coolest clothes or the latest version of whatever tech gadget there is to find. You are not allowed to have blemishes, or flaws of any kind. But who are they to say what is beautiful? What right have they to decide?
God made you and to Him you are beautiful just the way you are. He knows what is within you, and as you listen to His council, He will make you shine. And NO ONE can disminish your worth. Have the faith and the courage to stand up for what God created, because no one is quite as beautiful as you.
God has given you a wonderful gift, agency. It has been given to you the power to choose right or wrong. This is a gift no man can take away. People may limit your choices but it is your choice what you make of them. God wants you to follow Him and keep His commandments, but He will not force you. He loves you and respects your will to choose, though it saddens Him when you choose evil over that which is good. Make Him proud of you by choosing that which is good.
Christ is always willing to lift us up when we fall. He will protect and guide you if you allow Him to be apart of your life. He suffered for you so you wouldn’t have to. The world would pressure you into unbelief, but He is ever waiting to help you if you turn to Him. Never be afraid to take His hand, because it is ever extended towards you, waiting for you to grab hold and stand firm.