Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas is About the Christ...

This week has been a series of delays in all of the things I've wanted to accomplishment. My Relief Society lesson isn't done yet, the house isn't as clean as I would like it to be, the presents were only bought today for the kids in the family and still aren't wrapped, and all of the upcoming obligations are a little overwhelming to think about.

Last night, though, while working on my lesson, I took a few breaks to watch parts of the Christmas Devotional. I was especially moved by a part of Pres. Uchtdorf's talk. His words helped to bring me back to what is important and why we celebrate this season. If you haven't noticed, I tend to focus on the unimportant things more than I'd like and often need reminding.

I'm going to post the section of his talk here, with links to the entire devotional. It was so beautiful--both the words and music--and relaxing to listen to:

by Pres. Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Christmas Is about the Christ

In these precious moments we realize what we feel and know in our heart—that Christmas is really about the Christ.

Christmas and some of the cherished traditions of the season remind us that we, like the Wise Men of old, should seek the Christ and lay before Him the most precious of gifts: a broken heart and a contrite spirit. We should offer Him our love. We should give Him our willingness to take upon ourselves His name and walk in the path of discipleship. We should promise to remember Him always, to emulate His example, and to go about doing good. 1

We cannot offer Him the gift of perfection in all things because this is a gift beyond our capacity to give—at least for now. The Lord does not expect that we commit to move mountains. But He does require that we bring as gifts our best efforts to move ourselves, one foot in front of the other, walking in the ways He has prepared and taught.

And what are the Savior’s gifts to those who are willing to bring these gifts to Him?

This may be the most one-sided gift exchange in the history of the universe. The Savior’s gifts to us are breathtaking.

Let us begin with immortality. Because the Savior overcame death, all men and women—both the just and the unjust—will live forever. 2

Then, forgiveness—even though our sins and imperfections be as scarlet, they can become white as snow because of Him. 3

And finally, eternal life—the greatest gift of all. 4 Because of the Atonement of Christ, not only are we guaranteed an infinite quantity of life, but He offers the possibility of an unimaginable quality of life as well. 5

Some of His divine gifts are reserved for that glorious future day when we return to His presence.

But He extends many gifts and His grace to us every day. He promises to be with us, to come to us when we need comfort, 6 to lift us when we stumble, to carry us if needed, to mourn and rejoice with us. Every day He offers to take us by the hand and help transform ordinary life into extraordinary spiritual experiences.

I just love the way he expresses himself in these paragraphs. They really spoke to me on a personal level. To see the entire devotional, or just specific parts of it, click HERE.

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