The First Christmas
In discovering the true meaning of Christmas I found myself not just celebrating the Birth of Christ but also the gifts of Christ and how to give to others as he did. In my search I came across two talks, one by Thomas S. Monson and the other by Henry B. Eyring that sums up my feelings most accurately.
In the talk “Rediscovering the Spirit of Christmas” by Thomas S. Monson he says:
“When we have the spirit of Christmas, we remember Him whose birth we commemorate at this season of the year: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11).
Today there are hearts to gladden, kind words to say, deeds to be done, and souls to be saved.
One who had keen insight into the Christmas spirit wrote:
I am the Christmas Spirit—
I enter the home of poverty, causing palefaced children to open their eyes wide, in pleased wonder.
I cause the miser’s clutched hand to relax and thus paint a bright spot on his soul.
I cause the aged to renew their youth and to laugh in the old glad way.
I keep romance alive in the heart of childhood, and brighten sleep with dreams woven of magic.
I cause eager feet to climb dark stairways with filled baskets, leaving behind hearts amazed at the goodness of the world.
I cause the prodigal to pause a moment on his wild, wasteful way and send to anxious love some little token that releases glad tears—tears which wash away the hard lines of sorrow.
I enter dark prison cells, reminding scarred manhood of what might have been and pointing forward to good days yet to be.
I come softly into the still, white home of pain, and lips that are too weak to speak just tremble in silent, eloquent gratitude.
In a thousand ways, I cause the weary world to look up into the face of God, and for a little moment forget the things that are small and wretched.
I am the Christmas Spirit.1
May we each discover anew the Christmas spirit—even the Spirit of Christ.”
Henry B. Eyring wrote in his talk “How to Give Gifts to Christ” said, “Many of you will in the Christmas season find ways to give food to people who are hungry. As you do, you bring joy to the Lord. Yet He taught us that there is a way to give an even more priceless and lasting gift. He said, “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst” (John 6:35).
“Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
“When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
“Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
“And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me” (Matthew 25:37–40).
Therefore, I hope that I may have the true Spirit of Christmas in my heart and give to others as Christ did. He is the gift of Christmas and His gifts continue today.-Cyrene Swallow