Today is Christmas Eve. Tonight will be a night of much pageantry and celebration. Much is spoken of Santa Claus, reindeer, presents, candy, trees, elves and mistletoe. But this Christmas Eve I would like to focus on "The Night Before Christmas" 2010 years ago on the American continent.
A sign was prophesied to come declaring Christ's birth to the Nephites and Lamanites. There were many who did not beleive in Christ and they persecuted those who did. The wicked populous assigned a day when all the people who beleived in Jesus would "be put to death except the sign should come to pass". This obviously caused quite a commotion among the beleivers. Like christians in the time of Christ and today, their faith was tremendously tested. The day before that dreadful day, the leader of the church, Nephi, took the oppurtunity to offer up his heart to the Lord. He was understandably worried about what was happening the next day. The Lord's answer gives me comfort, "Lift up your head and be of good cheer; for behold, the time is at hand, and on this night shall the sign be given, and on the morrow come I into the world" (3 Nephi 1:9,13).
I know that Christ was born of Mary at Bethlehem. I know He healed many people and performed many other miracles. I know Christ died for us and I know He lives for us. And this Christmas Eve I invite all humble followers of the Christ to "be of good cheer" and trust in our savior.