Remembering Christ at Christmas

Remembering Christ at Christmas

News Story

At the Christmas season, the world celebrates the advent of the Lord Jesus Christ who came into the world that we might be freed from the effects of sin and receive the gift of eternal life through repentance. But individuals may become distracted in the day to day with events and materialism.

As our recently departed President Thomas S. Monson has said, “Everywhere people are in a hurry. Jet-powered aircraft speed their precious human cargo across broad continents and vast oceans so that . . . meetings might be attended, obligations met, vacations enjoyed, or families visited. Roadways everywhere—including freeways, thruways, and motorways—carry millions of automobiles, occupied by more millions of people, in a seemingly endless stream and for a multitude of reasons as we rush about the business of each day.

“In this fast-paced life, do we ever pause for moments of meditation—even thoughts of timeless truths?”

To encourage reflection upon the reason for Christians' celebration and application of the truths He taught, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has encouraged everyone to Light the World. For the first 25 days of December, we are encouraged to remember scriptures from the life and teachings of the Savior and apply them in our daily walk to think of others and serve them.

Did it make a difference? It did among a group of Young Single Adults (YSA) of the Church in Malacca, Malaysia.

 

Donations of clothes, toys, stationery and food were collected and distributed to children in an orphanage. They were presented with a hug and Christmas carols.

The hearts of the YSA participants were touched as they reflected upon their blessings.

“We are blessed to have a family,” they offered.

One toddler asked for a hug and then returned a warm smile as payment. The young adults had difficulty containing their emotions.

One young woman, Chelsea, stated, “In the act of giving, we thought of them. We wanted them to be blessed.”

A young man, Terrell, said, “We have been given so much. We want to give something back and lift their hearts.”

Another evening activity was to walk the downtown streets in Chinatown. They offered Christmas wishes of happiness and good cheer. Even though it seemed a small thing, the recipients were grateful and returned the warm greetings.

A young woman, Jenny, who was recently converted to the Church and Christianity said that previously her family had celebrated Christmas as a holiday and an opportunity to give gifts, but she had not understood the reason behind the celebration.

“This year was different,” she said. Even so, she thought she would celebrate alone because her family wouldn’t understand. But she discovered the blessing of an extended Church family who love and care for her. She feels as if she had a second home.

On another evening, the young men and women participated in a live depiction of the nativity. They felt the Spirit of God. Again, they reflected upon their blessings as members of the Church and recipients of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

As these YSA pondered the blessings of their focus on the words and acts of the Savior, they noted an increase of unity among the members of their congregation. At the beginning, they were the only ones participating. But after several weeks, the remainder of the congregation joined them. Their examples and the good experiences they were having beckoned to their fellow members.

The blessings of their reflection and activities have strengthened and edified the YSA, and they don’t want it to end. They want the good feelings to continue and are creatively thinking of ways they can "Light the World" as Christ did by extending the activity into the New Year.

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