Celebrating Christmas—Which Gifts Keep On Giving?

By Elana B When my sister and I were young, and still believed in the picture-book Santa with his bag of toys, we decided to stay up as late as possible on Christmas Eve, hoping to catch a glimpse of him, if not his reindeer. Our house was small, didn’t have a fireplace, but we weren’t worried about the details since we’d received gifts before with tags signed by “Santa Claus,” and knew he didn’t need a chimney because he could walk in our front door. My sister was five-and-a-half and I w...
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CAN I BE POSITIVE WITH A CHRONIC ILLNESS?

By Elana B I am a diabetic. I was diagnosed in late January 2011, just short of my 66th birthday. I woke up feeling like that wintery day would be my last. I had been experiencing all the symptoms--no energy, couldn’t sleep, drank volumes of water but was still thirsty. My body was shouting for help the only way it could...by shutting me down. I called my office to tell them I wouldn’t be in--why is it we have dedication to a job, enough to take care of “business,” but too often ignore our he...
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In What Ways Can Christ Heal Us?

By Aric M. During the first year of my time as a Mormon missionary I received an email from home telling me that a friend of mine from church had been seriously injured in an accident. At the time I really didn’t know how serious the accident was. All I knew was that my friend was away at Indiana University and she fell from a balcony and was seriously injured. A few days later I got a letter from my parents telling me what happened; how she had fallen and died on the scene of the accident. I’...
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How Can We Remember Christ At Christmas?

By Lauren W. Christmas always meant family time. As a child, that was easy. We’d wait for everyone to gather in the family room.  We would empty our stockings, eat the chocolates while disregarding the oranges, and thank mom for the small things we found inside. Cinnamon rolls warming in the oven, hot chocolate steaming on the stovetop. After we had eaten, my father would reach for the bible, and we’d dive for the costume box, draping ourselves in swaths of fabric that represented my young mo...
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What is the Best Christmas Gift?

By Natalie Q. Well-known stories like O. Henry’s The Gift of the Magi describe givers in a bind seeking the perfect gifts for loved ones. However, my favorite treatment of this theme comes from a lesser-known story that I recently discovered (thanks to a friend’s Instagram post): Christmas Day in the Morning by Pearl S. Buck. The story describes how Rob, now an old man, wakes early on Christmas morning and recollects a meaningful present he gave his father fifty years prior. That year, teena...
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How Can We Make Christmas Meaningful For Children?

By Teisha P. As parents we wonder how to help our children feel the magic that accompanies the Christmas holiday when it seems to be lost in a shopping focused season. For some people, the sole purpose of Christmas is to receive and give gifts. Two years ago my husband and I stayed with my father and stepmother for the Christmas Holiday and this was the case in their home. While the tradition of giving and getting gifts is fun and adds to the excitement of the holiday, I noticed that when all t...
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