Christmas. Each year during this season, I find that I am drawn to past memories, much like Ebenezer Scrooge. For me, Christmas holds many different memories. I have always cherished this time of the year and the story of a babe born in a manger surrounded by the animals.
On Christmas Eve, even as a child, I loved to feed. There was something about the peacefulness of the animals on that night. Growing up in Northern Utah, there was usually snow, and the sky often would be filled with glittering stars that would seem to compete with the glittering snow on the ground.
As I started my family, the excitement of children filled my evenings. My little family would develop traditions that are cherished today. My youngest son was born 6 days before Christmas. There is nothing in the world like having an infant at this sacred time of the year, to hold that little one close and know that His mother, Mary, held her son in much the same way.
My dad loved Christmas. He was a great man, and he loved animals and children. He worked hard and taught us to appreciate the ability to work and the blessings of living in this country. A tear would often fill his eye when he would hold a baby. Two years after the birth of my youngest son, my dad died on Christmas night. I loved my dad. We shared so much, even the color of our eyes and our smile. I am often asked, when it is revealed that he died on this special day, if it has ruined my holidays. Like much of life, it is a matter of perspective. I have known birth and death within days of the birth of the Savior. His life is reflected in my Christmas memories. To answer the question, no, I am not sad; I do not mourn. I know that He lives. So does my dad.
May the blessings of peace, hope, and charity fill your season and you’re coming year.
Merry Christmas — cherish the memories!