This past week was very exciting for us. My next to youngest son received his mission call in the mail. This is a big deal in Mormon land (members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or LDS Church) as there are now over 88,000 young men, women and couples teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to the world as this is his chance to serve the Lord for two years.
Moses is going to Gilbert, Arizona, Spanish speaking mission. This means he will enter the Missionary Training Center in Provo Utah and learn Spanish for nine weeks and then fly to Gilbert to teach those searching for the truth.
This is what we call the “Gathering of Israel.” Back in the day of the Old Testament we learned about Jacob who is eventually called Israel and his twelve sons who eventually become the twelve tribes of Israel. We are promised through the Abrahamic Covenant (which is the promise that nations and kindred’s of the earth would be blessed through Abraham’s seed) would be fulfilled in these latter days before the second coming of the Savior.
The descendants of Abraham, which include the twelve tribes of Israel, will be gathered together. Those accepting of the gospel of Jesus Christ in their life are part of the gathering of Israel.
This time of the year we remember the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ which message has been shouted around the world from the roof tops through these special Disciples of Christ. There are people all over the world who want hope and happiness and with the message of the gospel many can come to understand how the Savior can help us.
The Savior represents love and hope. The Spirit of Christmas is the season of love and giving to others. We should all learn what it truly means in giving of ourselves to others. Not just in buying material possessions but in spending time and using our talents to share with our friends and family. That is the true meaning of the Christmas spirit.
During a Christmas past, my family had learned what really helps us to feel the Savior’s love. There was a homeless family whom I knew and I found a house they could live in close by. With the help of some good friends, we collected furniture and cleaned all we could, making sure the stove and refrigerator worked. We painted rooms and unclogged the drains. The day finally came when they moved into their new home and the joy this family felt after they moved in was overwhelming. This was much better than any present we could buy for ourselves.
Through our acceptance of the Savior in our life and the works we do for others we can find that joy. JOY meaning keep Jesus, Others and Yourself in that order. If we can remember these things, we will return to our heavenly life after our work on earth is completed and be blessed for eternity.
The gathering of Israel has been gaining speed over the years through the missionary work around the world preparing for the coming of the Savior again in His glory. With the celebration of His birth at this time, we can follow His example of kindness to others.
Valerie Steimle has been writing as a family advocate for over 25 years. As a convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, she promotes Christian living in her writings and is the mother of nine children and grandmother to twelve. Mrs. Steimle authored six books and is a contributing writer to several online websites. To her, time is the most precious commodity we have and knows we should spend it wisely. To read more of Valerie's work, visit her at her website, The Blessings of Family Life.