As the temperature dips across the state, adventure is everywhere! Opportunities to get out and make memories are plentiful. Snow is a welcome sight at Arizona’s own Snowbowl and Sunrise Ski Resorts. Night after night of spectacular sunsets are scheduled to serve as backdrop to many of the Valley’s trails or scheduled open-air festivals. Expecting company? Consider these five activities.
Friends love to receive sweet treats at Christmastime, but how about delivering something spiritually fulfilling for a change? As a family, discuss ways of being thoughtful, intentional messengers of glad tidings to specific people. Give them an uplift! Take notes of what every family member plans to do, whether to uplift one friend or several.
Some gifts listed below could accompany a Christmas card or be shared electronically!
Uplifting Gift Ideas:
*A picture of Jesus Christ—alone, with children, or whatever your friend might appreciate most. Perhaps add a brief note telling why you are grateful for the Savior, or your favorite story of Him.
*A picture of the temple closest to your friend. Explain that all are invited onto the public grounds and encouraged to ponder in the serene environment that has been dedicated to God. (Suggestion: Give a small, inexpensive, unframed picture of the temple, so your friend doesn’t feel obligated to hang it on a wall.)
*A copy of “The Living Christ: The Testimony of the Apostles.”
* A pretty bookmark (store-bought or handmade) with an inspirational phrase. For example: “I Am a Child of God.”
*An invitation to your ward Christmas party.
*A verbal invitation to attend church with you if ever the interest arises.
*A Church video link.
*The Church’s hymns or Children’s Songbook on CD—each are available for under $8.
*The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ. Copies in English and Spanish are available locally. Numerous other languages can be ordered online at the Church’s distribution center at store.lds.org. The Book of Mormon, other scriptures, and translated articles can be read in different languages free of charge at lds.org. Your friend can even listen as a book of scripture is read aloud in English, Spanish or Portuguese! Share the direct link by email or social media.
*The Bible. Perhaps a friend is wary of The Book of Mormon. The Bible is another important book of Holy Scripture with power to uplift and transform lives.
Remember that an invitation by you—with your spiritual gifts, your personality traits, your beautiful, unique testimony and especially the love you have for your friend—may be exactly the invitation that individual needs to receive the good news of the Savior with an open heart. Let your friends know that you cherish their freedom of conscience as you cherish your own, and that you will remain friends regardless of their level of interest in your spiritual offerings.
Your friends may not choose to read the Book of Mormon or join The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but they may deeply appreciate the opportunity to speak with you about spiritual matters. It’s helpful to engage in such conversations with the goal of uplifting and enlightening each other . . . and then you will! Rather than trying to convert each other with doctrinal arguments, look together toward God. Your testimonies of Him and your friendship will both be strengthened.