"There is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah"
2 Nephi 2:8 (The Book of Mormon)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Worthy Celebration

Is it really already December?  This year has been an intense exercise in "seeking and finding" for me.  It has been a profound privilege for me to search out the will of my Father concerning this blog... which officially began the week of Christmas almost a year ago.  Each week, I have spent 2 to 4 hours in the process of seeking inspiration and then working in the spirit to formulate the message the Father would have me receive and communicate.  This process has been both time and energy consuming, yet any personal sacrifice I have made pales in comparison with the outpouring of enlightenment the Father has blessed me with.  I have felt His love and mindfulness at new depths which has left me forever changed.

So here you and I stand at the start of another Christmas season!   Christ's birth marked the entry of the Savior into His mortal ministry.  He came to do His Father's will.  His mission was to teach, to heal and ultimately to overcome... saving each of us from the bonds of sin and death!  Nothing could be more deserving of jubilant celebration!

I invite you to look for ways to more fully honor and reverence Him this blessed December.  Without determined focus on the Savior, Christmas easily becomes a stress filled, over booked, over spent time of year. The precious opportunity to experience His peace and love is lost leaving us with little more than a messy house to show for our effort.

Look for Him in the symbols of Christmas which are all around you.  Listen for Him in the beautiful carols which fill the air.  Consciously choose to take time to be still to feel Him. As you make this effort to draw near unto Him, I promise and testify that He will draw near unto you!  You and those you love will experience a Christmas season that refreshes you in His strength, soothes you in His peace and fills you with His love.  Please... PLEASE... make this a matter of prayerful consideration.

I have included a list of the symbols of Christmas.  Each year, Todd and I take an evening early in the month to pull these symbols from our treasure box and discuss them with our family.  It is a wonderfully simple way to help each of us remember Him as we go about our daily business.

I will take next Sunday off from posting and will be back for the "Week-long Walk With Christ" beginning Sunday, December 18th, concluding Christmas day!!!

The Symbols of Christmas

Star-  The star is the heavenly sign of promise.  God promised a Savior- the star was a sign of the fulfillment of that promise.  The countless shining stars now show the burning hope of all mankind.

Candle and Lights-  The mirror of starlight is candlelight.  The candle represents man's thanks for the star of promise and the Light of Christ.  In former days candles were used to decorate the Christmas tree.  Today we use lights and these too remind us of the star that led to the newborn King.
Tree-  The Christmas Tree is evergreen representing everlasting life.  The tree and needles point heavenward- symbolic of man turning his heart and thoughts towards God.  Green is the color of life.

Bell-  Lost sheep are found by the tinkling of the bell.  As Christmas bells ring, man is reminded to return to the fold.  We know that the Spirit will guide us.  The bell is the symbol of guidance.

Candy Cane-  The shepherd uses his crook to gently bring a straying lamb into the flock.  The candy cane is in the form of a shepherd's crook and reminds us that we are our brother's keeper.  Red reminds us of the blood and love of Christ.  White reminds us of His purity.  Turn the candy cane upside-down and see the letter "J" for Jesus. 

Gift-  We give gifts at Christmas time to remind us of the glorious gift God gave to us... His Only Begotten Son.  Three kings brought gifts for the newborn babe.  We can give our gift to Jesus by honoring His sacrifice through our good works.

Bow-  The bow reminds us of the brotherhood of man.  It is tied as we should be tied--all of us together with the bonds of goodwill toward each other.  Good will is the message of the bow.

Wreath-  The circle of the wreath represents the eternal nature of each of us.  May we live our lives at all times with our eye on eternity.

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