Whoever has two coats should share with someone with none. -Luke 3:11
If you know of someone who needs help… be a light and available to help always, but especially during the Christmas season~
By Marion Algier – The War on Christmas (and Religion) Verses the Spirit of Christmas Series at AskMarion – 21
Random Acts of Kindness and Charity Are the Best Gifts to Yourself… As Well as to Those in Need!
Christmas is the perfect time to show acts of kindness and build a stronger sense of community. The spirit of the holiday is undeniable and Christmas kindness is legendary. Many of us are so busy during the year that random acts of kindness may slip our mind. This holiday season, make a point to enrich the lives of the less fortunate as well as those close to your heart. Here are some simple acts of kindness that make a big difference and can make the holidays more enjoyable for all involved.
Feed the Hungry – Instead of buying extra food or expensive gifts, set aside a small portion of your Christmas budget to feed those who can’t afford a lavish of even basic Christmas dinner. A small act of kindness such as donating to a soup kitchen or donating canned goods to various food drives is a great way to spread Christmas kindness and help those less fortunate enjoy their holiday. No matter what religion one embraces, all of them teach the lesson of kindness toward others and donating to the less fortunate in their time of need. It is always the perfect time to perform random acts of kindness, help build a better society, and uplift those in need of your charity, but making sure that everyone eats at Christmastime, including pets and animals, and seeing to it that all children receive a gift for Christmas is a great place to start. Start by donating extra canned goods (and not just the creamed corn) to a local drive; buy food that your family likes during the holidays and then donate it to your local shelter; or invite someone in need outside your circlw to Christmas dinner at your house. Volunteer to help prepare or serve a meal at a local rescue or shelter. Also invite some family, friends or neighbors that are having a tough time or will be alone over the holidays to share Christmas dinner with you and your family and make sure to send them home with some leftovers for at least one more meal!
Help Friends, Family or a Stranger that you Know Are in Need – More Americans are or have been in some type of distress or need the past few years than at anytime since the Depression. If you know of someone who needs help whether it is with cash, food, gifts for their children, help to care for their pets, car repairs or transportation, gas money, to stay off the streets, to move, to find shelter, to get home for the holidays or anything else, find their need or ask them what they need and try to fill it. If it is too big for you to do alone try to organize other friends, family, neighbors, churches and church members, or outside resources to help them. Working together we can create miracles and move mountains Adopt a family, a friend, or a homeless person; you will feel like Santa Claus.
Cook a healthy or varied (if needed) meal for the holidays – Avoid going on a diet after the holidays. Your guests would likely appreciate a Christmas meal consisting of more than just the traditional heavy foods or some of the trendy deep fried greasy foods. Try to create a versatile meal that compliments both omnivores and vegetarian alike, if you have some coming to dinner; cooking a couple extra vegetarian dishes is not very difficult, and those who don’t eat meat or those who choose to eat healthier will greatly appreciate it. The traditional spread is classic, delicious, and what I prefer, but it’s good to have a few alternatives.
Cheer up the sick – Those who are in the most need of kindness during the holiday season are those in the hospital who might miss most of the Christmas festivities. Pay a visit to those who may be alone during the holidays, give them small gifts, and generally uplift them. Sometimes the best way to cure physical and emotional pain is simple human interaction. It may not seem like a monumental event, but one small gift or an unexpected visit from a total stranger may make their holiday memorable.
Donate gifts to charity – Think about the amount of old gifts laying around the house, items that the kids no longer use, that you no longer use. Many of these are probably in good enough condition for those less fortunate to enjoy. The average American house/garage/storage space is absolutely overflowing with old items that individuals simply refused to let go of. And some of us even have gifts we have never taken out of the box. This holiday season, why not donate some of those gifts to organizations aimed at helping those in need of a little holiday spirit. An old, outdated toy may not mean much to you or your children, but might mean the world to those who can’t afford Christmas gifts.
Share Your Holiday With Someone of a Different Belief – Invite someone of a different of faith, a non-believer, or someone from another ethnicity with different traditions to your house to share a part of your holiday. The more we each know about each other and each other’s faiths and traditions the better the world will be! One of my greatest experiences was to share a Seder dinner with a good friend and her family.
Adopt a pet or two – Many more animals need love and a forever home this year than normal because they families fell on hard times. Consider adopting or fostering just one more pet for the holidays… the shelters are overflowing and 2 out of 3 animals who get into the shelter system never leave there alive! Or help a family having tough times feed their pets or get them items or medical attention that they have not been able to afford. And continue to help them with pet food after Christmas. Or pay the adoption fees for a senior citizen or family who would love a pet but can’t squeeze out the extra money for the fees. Donating pet food to a pet food bank or regular food bank is another welcomed act of kindness or volunteer at a local rescue or shelter and help them find foster homes, if not permanent homes, for the pets in their care.
The greatest gift and feeling at Christmastime is the satisfaction you get from giving and helping others. Make it a goal this year. It will change your life as much or more than that of those you help. If we all spent more time paying it forward and helping those that fall onto hard times, the world would be a better and richer place!
“This time of year, people are happier and treat each other better. They smile, are nicer, go a little bit out of their way to help each other out and let the little things slide with a grin, saying ‘hey it’s Christmas’. Merry Christmas, M’Dear!” …Rob Miller – The Watcher’s Council
So let’s take that Christmas spirit one step further this Season and into the next year. Be the light, the example and help for those around you, and for those in need that you hear about~
There are some great books out for Christmas this year: ‘Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas’ (Kindle), The Romney Family Table: Sharing Home-Cooked Recipes & Favorite Traditions (Kindle) and Dear Chandler, Dear Scarlett: A Grandfather’s Thoughts on Faith, Family, and the Things That Matter Most (Kindle) Plus: Losing Our Religion(Kindle) by atheist S. E. Cupp
MERRY CHRISTMAS! God bless us all, each and every one!