Christmas, for me has always been a time for reflection. Christmas is special because I truly believe in salvation through Jesus Christ. I also believe in my heart that we are saved by God’s grace, not by our deeds. That is how good the Lord is to us, His children. All the Lord wants from us is to obey His commandment, that is to love God with all our heart, with all our soul and with all our strength. So since Christmas is at the end of the year, I usually spend time to reflect whether or not I have fulfilled His commandment. For me, the genuine measure of success in life is to determine how we have fared in obeying God’s simple commandment. I try looking back at the significant things that I have done this past year. Then I find out whether or not these things were in obedience to Gods commandment. Many times, I must admit, in my reflections, I have failed Him. I look back what happened this year and I think many times, rather than loving God, I have loved myself with all my heart, with all my soul and with all my strength. I think that is called selfishness. Many times, I have taken the easy road, rather than that bumpy road less traveled. Many times, I have not been honest. What a tragedy, I must say. What a failure, I must add. I recall attending a lecture in Legal Ethics, recently. The speaker began the lecture by asking how many of the lawyers in attendance have asked for a postponement of a court hearing. Everyone raised their hands. The speaker asked, were you honest in your reasons for asking for postponement? No one answered. The truth is, there is a host of colorful reasons for skipping court hearings: having diarrhea, the witness has high blood pressure, stomach ache, conflict of schedule, etc. Lawyers have a reputation of being liars because even in the simplest of things (asking for postponements), they cannot be honest. Not surprisingly, they become the butt of jokes. Bato bato sa langit, ang taman huwag magalit. I have to be “lawyer enough” to admit this. Guilty. What is relieving and consoling, is God’s faithful assurance that despite my failures, God will save me out of His grace. After reflecting, I try to look forward and do better next year. I hope that we will have time to reflect about our sins this past year, and avoid them next year. If everyone does this, I think the world will become a better place to live. Merry Christmas!