Thursday, December 21, 2017

President Spencer W. Kimball on the spirit of the Christmas season

President Spencer W. Kimball (1895-1985) was ordained an apostle in 1943 and served as President of the Church from 1973 to 1985.
"Christmas comes once a year to reveal to us the beautiful and near approach man can make to the divine, to the ideal, to the Christlike life.
"Once a year on this day we raise the flag of truce. All men are friends. We are our 'brother's keeper.' It comes so clearly to us that all mean well, that their greetings are sincere. We lift high the open hand of fellowship. There is no race, no color, no rich or poor, no bond or free. Christmas comes to remind us of the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man. It comes to show us the real progress we would make, could all our days be unselfish, friendly, helpful, and clear of bitterness and strife."
- Spencer W. Kimball, St. Joseph Stake Primary, 12/16/34; see The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball p. 247

If we are attentive, we will notice the change that we feel at Christmastime each year. As President Kimball describes it, we begin to make an approach " to the divine, to the ideal, to the Christlike life."

So we sense " the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man" in the midst of the spirit of this season. If we are careful to notice how we feel, and what motivates that change, then perhaps as President Kimball suggests, we could make "real progress" towards changing our natures in all our days, and not just in the Christmas season.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2017)

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