This is the time of year that shiny paper and pretty bows rest under stately pines and our family life is abuzz with anticipation and a festive spirit. But for some families, Christmas is the time of year that accents suffering, despair, and lost hope. The birth of the King we celebrate is the very symbol of that hope that so many feel distanced from. How can we give back of our many blessings and help glorify the hope that Christ represents to those who need it so very much?
Teach your family the real meaning of giving this holiday season. Here are 10 ways to give this Christmas:
1. Prepare the Spirit.
A fantastic way to set the mood for purposeful giving is to read a devotional each day with your family during the countdown to Christmas. There are many sources to choose from, and they can be found online or at your local Christian bookstore.
2. Time in Prayer.
Lead your family in prayer by asking for guidance towards the best suited ways for your family to give back. As with individuals, families all have unique gifts and special talents to offer. Prayer will lead to the best places to put those gifts to use.
3. Export Christmas.
While most families are enjoying the season in comfort, so many others are working to make sure all the services we depend on keep running around the clock. Whether it is the nurses in ICU at the local hospital or the convenience store clerk working on Christmas Eve, take Christmas to them by making a family visit. Be sure to bring treats, heartfelt thanks, and the hope of the newborn King!
4. Invite Someone to Christmas Dinner.
Depression and feelings of desperate loneliness are very common during the holiday season. We all know people who are spending the season alone. Invite them into your home for Christmas dinner and share the blessings of love and peace.
5. Give to Impoverished Children.
There are many opportunities to make sure impoverished children have something to open on Christmas morning as well. Ask your child, “Who is the neediest person you know?” and buy a gift to give to them.
6. Tip with Generosity.
There are many souls who keep our lives running in an orderly fashion every single day for very little pay. Trash collectors, postal workers, and emergency service people are but a few. Generously tip those that work hard to make your life better. For instance, leave a Christmas greeting and gift card for your trash collectors or bake a batch of goodies for the fire fighters and deliver them to your local station.
7. Show Care for the Orphaned and Elderly.
We are instructed to take extra notice of those who aren’t able to care for themselves. Visit local children’s homes and nursing homes, and spend time with those who so badly need the hope we represent. Our genuine time and care is what they cherish the most.
8. Be a Secret Santa.
Seek out a family or person in need of help this holiday season. Determine their needs and provide help without them having any clue of where it came from. Perhaps a rent payment made in stealth or a prepaid credit card left in a secure location.
9. Serve the Homeless.
Involve your whole family in helping to feed and provide services for the homeless. The most valuable gift is our time, so give freely. Do so without judgment, but only because the born Savior wills it be done.
10. Invite to Worship.
Christmas is about the birth of man’s salvation and the hope of eternal life in the presence of God. That is the true gift of this season and it is everlasting. Share it as we are commanded to do so, by spreading this good news and inviting others to receive it too.
Huddle up with your family tonight and decide on ways to give back this Christmas season.