As we say goodbye to November, the month that encourages us to think about all we are grateful for, December begins and immediately minds turn to parties, lists to be made, gifts to be purchased, and meals to be planned. It seems we quickly go from a mindset of gratitude to a mindset of wanting. I think this says a lot about how easily we can lose focus on what is truly important.

I would like to challenge each of us, in the midst of this busy Christmas season, to take time each day to reflect on what the season is truly about. There is much we can learn from the Christmas story, but let us begin today with the most fundamental message of the season—the birth of the Christ child. His birth points us to recognize the birth of the Christ within. Begin to celebrate the Christ within your being, and I believe you will find that the joy you experience and share this holiday season will surprise you.