Its Advent already, that time of the year preparing and awaiting the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Christmas is all about giving, being thoughtful of the people around us, reaching out to those who are in need. If we are not doing those already Advent is the perfect time to start. Having celebrated Thanksgiving, having counted all our many blessings, now, its the time to reach out to others to share our blessings! And that's the essence of Christmas!
We have a big giving tree in our church with tags mentioning something a poor family needs. We could choose one of those, to our ability and return it gift wrapped with the tag mentioning what it is and for whom it is for! It is joyful to watch the tags in the tree disappear while the tree is surrounded by wrapped gifts big and small. This is just a small sign of the community reaching out to its people.
We let our kids choose a tag from the tree. That way, they realize about the wants of people in our community and also how much we are blessed. No more cribbing about how much less toys we have (at least for a month). And also the kids learn to empathize and help the needy.
Of course, it is time to pull out our Christmas tree and ornaments, lights and stars! The festive joy fills the hearts and house bringing warmth in the crisp cold winter month. When we relish that cup of hot chocolate we also think of those who are out there in the cold without food and warmth. That melts our hearts like the marshmallows and we are even more determined to make a change, a positive change. A change that will nourish and uplift the community.
And we get back to the wrapping of gifts, to those unknown faces which would light up a little bit this Christmas.
And when we are grateful for the gifts we receive, especially for the gift of our family, we tend to enjoy it and nurture it even more. A board game is perfect to celebrate the togetherness of friends and family in a cold dark evening.