“Nearly two thousand years ago a perfect Man walked the earth—Jesus the Christ. … In His life, all the virtues were lived and kept in perfect balance; He taught men truth—that they might be free; His example and precepts provide the great standard—the only sure way—for all mankind” Ezra Taft Benson
We have lots of traditions in my family. Some are those that were established in my home as a child. Others we have adopted from my wife’s family. Still others are unique to my own family and children.
They are not all exclusive to us. I am sure you share many of them, including the twelve days of Christmas. The idea is that you pick someone in the neighborhood to whom you show special kindness the twelve days preceding Christmas: a loaf of freshly made bread, candies, chocolate, a thoughtful note…you name it. I have enjoyed both the participation and reception of this kindness—blessings are abundant during these times.
We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family this year. My brother showed me a video and a challenge similar to the twelve days of Christmas, but this activity lasts for 25 days, perhaps a lifetime.
Somehow I was oblivious to the preparations being made, but as I enjoyed the high quality and touching content, I see now the Church has been preparing this worldwide event for some time. It is a chance to look at the things the way Jesus Christ did by serving every day leading up to Christmas and resolving to follow his example and do what he did when possible.
To help, the site provides daily inspiration, suggestions, and encouragement on how we can follow the example of Jesus Christ. The tagline is Follow Our Savior Jesus Christ. In 25 Ways. Over 25 Days. The movement is called LIGHTtheWORLD — and encourages us to follow the example of Jesus Christ, share His light, and serve as He served. It provides dozens of ideas and videos to inspire you, and a website to track the activities with a comprehensive counter to help tabulate the worldwide impact. A counter, a shockwave.
So just think if we all participated. That would be millions of acts of kindness, tens of thousands of people affected for good, and all of it completed in a matter of 25 days prior to Christmas. I tend to think the most memorable Christmases ever involve those where we focus on serving others. This is our opportunity to serve as the Savior did. The acts are simple and easy. The rewards are great, memorable, and heartwarming. And the needs are huge.
Just this week, one of the men in our neighborhood died of a heart attack. His wife is no doubt feeling shock, depression, anxiety, and loss. Yet because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, there is no hopelessness. One of the tremendous gifts of the gospel of Jesus Christ is hope in the midst of hardship. I have been fortunate to have a father who understood this.
“There is a matter I have long been concerned about. The problem comes into perspective at a sacrament meeting: adults as well as children give tender loving praise for bishops, teachers, neighbors, and the prophet. But too few feel and express it for the Savior. We are not achieving our most important goal until we have established in the hearts of our children and the saints, an even greater love for Him.
“Friends may betray us, spouses may leave us, health may fail, and our possessions burn up. But, Christ, His promises, understanding, and love will never fail us. With some trials and most tragedies, only this can get us through.
“When we can take a thankless, demanding calling; give up something we wanted greatly so we can pay our tithing; or help out someone who has badly hurt us… and say, ‘I wouldn’t do this for anyone else, but I will do it for Christ!’ …then the power for good he can have in our lives is becoming a reality. He must be the foundation of our lives.”
We can follow him today and LIGHT the WORLD. A Savior has been born. Hallelujah!
“What manner of men out ye to be? Even as I am.” These words were spoken by the Savior of the world himself “Do the things you have seen me do.” Howard W. Hunter
That is the kind of men we should be.
The angels came, the heavens sang, behold this is my Son. The Savior is born today.
“I love the Sabbath, the sacrament, and what they mean. I love the Savior with all my soul.”
Claudio R. M. Costa
“Good men sometimes make mistakes. A man of integrity will honestly face and correct his mistakes, and that is an example we can respect. Sometimes men try but fail. Not all worthy objectives are realized despite one’s honest and best efforts. True manhood is not always measured by the fruits of one’s labors but by the labors themselves—by one’s striving.”
D. Todd Christofferson
“As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” Alma 42:8
Brethren let us be men and follow the life and example of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He can light your life as you follow his example and keep his word. Think of all he has done for us.
In 1989, Walter Penning formed a consultancy based in Salt Lake City and empowered his clients by streamlining processes and building a loyal, lifetime customer base with great customer service. His true passion is found in his family. He says the best decision he ever made was to marry his sweetheart and have children. The wonderful family she has given him and her constant love, support, and patience amid life's challenges is his panacea.