Christmas is a whirlwind of excitement, time spent with family, but also, sometimes, a time full of stress. It can be hard to find the “perfect” gift for someone.
I remember as a child, with limited funds, it being difficult to find the “perfect” gift for my parents. Each Christmas, my sister and I would craft up an idea for them and work to make or find the funds to get them something special from two of us. As we got older, homemade presents, though special, didn’t seem to fill what we deemed to be “special enough” for two people who gave us so much.
One year, my older (and in this case wiser) sister, came up with a gift for our parents that exceeded our own expectations of being “special”. We chose a “Christmas Angel” from a local clothing store to sponsor in our parents name. Together, my sister and I shopped for a local family, purchasing needed items, as well as wanted items for the kids. At the moment, I wasn’t too sure how my sister’s idea was good for my parents, I mean, they weren’t receiving anything! Now, I see how special it truly was.
On Christmas morning, we wrapped up a big, empty box to add to the excitement. Unwrapping the present, my parents found a note stating that we had sponsored a family in their names, along with a list of all that we had gotten them. My mom teared up, and as a kid I knew that meant we had again successfully pulled off a great Christmas gift. As an adult, I now know why.
Parenting, in general, is difficult. There are a multitude of choices you must make regularly that will affect your child’s life and that will ultimately contribute to the type of child and adult they will grow to be. While our Christmas gift that year helped a family in need, it did more than that. It ensure my parents that they were doing a great job as parents, that they had taught us to have giving hearts.
As Christmas is around the corner, this memory drives me to want to ensure that as a parent, I am teaching the joy of giving, instead of fueling the ever-growing trend of greediness. So today, my family is going to again sponsor a child (or two!) this Christmas, to help instill in not only our children, but also ourselves, that it truly is better to give, than to receive.
I hope this post helps you to remember the true meaning of this time of year. That you help to teach our little ones the power of giving, and not further encourage the mentality of greediness. The world could use a lot more good this time of year!