It isn't what you get, it is what you become.

This year I was able to attend my home church, Hosanna!, to celebrate Christmas Eve. For the first time ever, they had a live nativity scene. It was simply amazing. The front altar was covered with hay, and roaming about were 2 camels, a donkey, goat, lamb, calf and geese. Throughout the service, the lamb “baa’ed” and made his voice heard. The dust from the hay emcompassed the congregation, my daughter’s eyes began to water, and we both began to sneeze. The Christmas carols sounded sweet as I’ve ever heard, and a part of me felt like I was really there. It was one of those moments where I looked over at my husband and thought to myself, wow. We are so blessed. Sitting between us were our 2 beautiful children. We were among the animals celebrating Jesus’ birth.

Part of our pastor’s message was this. So much of Christmas has become “what did you get for Christmas?” He said something simple, but something that I’d like to remember. “It isn’t what you get, it is what you become.” I like that. A good overall life lesson. It isn’t what you have, what kind of car you drive, how many toys you own, or how nice your house is- in other words: what you get. It is who you are, and who you become. Approaching every new year, I try and take a good hard look at myself. Who would I like to become, and what am I going to do to get there?

I go back to the fruits of the spirit- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and self control. I can’t think of a better character checklist than that. Now, where do I begin?

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