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NEVER-ENDING SEASON

Many people bemoan the fact that Christmas has become commercialized.

They see stores crammed with sparkling decorations, highly promoted

merchandise and frenzied shoppers looking for gifts on evergorowing

lists. Some might declare, in paraphrasing and misquoting a poet of

by-gone days, “Christmas is too much with us.”

But that isn’t so. While material trappings of the season can be

overdone. Christmas never can be too much with us.

Christmas is a never-ending season for those who follow the Savior and

emulate His teachings. For Christians, every day is a day to remember

His descent from Heavenly realms to dwell on Earth among mortals. To

His followers, every day is a day to keep His commandments, to do His

works, to serve others as He served, and to love one another, just as

He taught His disciples.

With the Christmas season come reminders of the greatest Gift to all

the world, the birth of the Son of God, our Lord and Savior, Jesus

Christ. At this time of year, many ponder that great Gift and its

meaning. But every Christian ought to ponder it every day.

At this time of year, many draw nearer to family and friends. Would

that they do so throughout the year! In December, we see kind-hearted

people who make room at their tables for those who are alone, and even

for strangers, and visit the home-bound or residents of nursing homes.

Do not people need to be fed, visited and receive neighborly cheer in

other months as well? At Christmas time, many find ways to stretch

money far enough to give to charitable organizations or individuals in

need. But are not the poor always among us?

The Christmas season — even if it is commericalized — serves as a

great reminder of the fact that the Son of God came to Earth to dwell

among mortals, serving as no one else could serve and paving the way

for allto return to their heavenly home. As we turn our focus away

from its secular aspects, we discover the real joy and beauty of

Christmas. Also, we carry the joy of His good news with us throughout

they year.

People who remember Christ’s teachings tend to look at others through

the broader and more forgiving lens of love and concern instead of the

narrow microspoe of judgment. As they encounter apparently homeless

people, for example, their thoughts lean more toward wondering if those

souls have warm beds to sleep in and how they might help than to

suppose that the needy bring misfortune upon themselves.

Imagine what the world would be like if Christians everywhere behaved

as if every day is Christmas: a day to remember Jesus and His Divine

ministry and His ultimate gift of the Atonement, and a day to show love

for Him by helping and being kind to others. Every day, all year long.

Days passed and, by the world’s calendar, the Christmas season ends –

decorations are removed, wrappings and ribbons are thrown away or

carefully saved for future use, musical lyrics on radios no longer

refer to refrains of angels singing, a silent night or a little town

called Bethlehem. For too many people, thoughts of Christmas are put

away as surely as ornaments and lights are stored in a closet, attic or

basement.

Many people’s thoughts turn to the end of an old year and the beginning

of a new year. Reflecting on the past, some look forward to the

future. On mental tote boards, they tally mistakes, lost

opportunities, bad decisions of the past year, and on the clean slates

of a new year they make resolutions.

A hymn might serve as a guide for a list of resolutions. Individuals

ought to seek to become more holy, strive to do His will, be patient in

suffering, have sorrow for sin, have faith in the Savior, be aware of

His care, be joyful in His service, and have more purpose in prayer.

Further resolutions include becoming more grateful, and trusting in the

Lord, having more pride in His glory and hope in His word, being more

tearful for His sorrows, feeling pain for His grief, being meek in

trials and offering praise when He brings relief.

Still further resolutions to seek are puirty and strength to overcome

temptations, freedom from the sins of the world, a longing for our

heavenly home, fitness for the kingdom, usefulness and, finally, to

become more like the Savior. (“More Holiness Give Me,” HYMNS, No. 131).

With such a list of resolutions, the spirit of Christmas will abice

with followers of Jesus Christ every day of the year.

—–”Church News” week ending December 4, 2004 (The Church of Jesus

Christ of Latter-day Saints)

Merry Christmas! FREE Books Dec. 20 & 21

Just click on the title to go the Amazon page and download your FREE Ebook.  As my Christmas present to you ( and all your friends you want to share with ).

WINNING BASKETBALL DRILLS

THE ASSISTANT BASKETBALL COACH

SHAMROCK HIGH POST OFFENSE

NEW YORK TRIPLE POST OFFENSE

BASKETBALL DREAMS FROM THE REZ  ( fictional short story )

TOMMY MEETS DR. ZEUS: A TOMMY TUSSLE ADVENTURE #2  ( Actually nothing to do with basketball – this is a middle school reader for 4th-6th graders )

I also have about a dozen or so more ebooks for free Dec. 20 & 21.  None of them are basketball related.  Just put my name ( Larry Dean Jackson ) in the search bar.

Hope you enjoy.