It is far better to give than to receive. This has been said by many people and I believe it is true. I love to give my husband and family gifts but would rather others give their money and gifts to those less fortunate. Often we hear ‘But who are the less fortunate?’
I’ll share with you some of my thoughts on who these people are. They can be those without food and shelter. The man or woman sitting on the sidewalk downtown could be one of these individuals. The lady in the line ahead of you at the second hand store, the one holding on to her little child’s hand, rooting in her pocket for her little bit of change. The two old people walking slowly with no one around to help with their groceries or their walkway in Winter weather, who get by on small pensions, could be in this category. The mentally ill who feel misunderstood and unloved may be people who need our kindness.
Some people think they have to give hundreds of dollars. That is not the only way to give. Dropping off a meal to a neighbour or surprising a single parent with a chicken or turkey is an option. Sharing your extra coats or boots with a person who has none or passing out muffins or sandwiches to people on strike-all are in need of your generosity.
I once met a lovely lady at Cabot College who shared a story about how each holiday she and her family set an extra place at their table in case some lonely soul drops in. I thought about this story often over the years. Another family provides snowsuits, boots, caps and mittens for another family in their neighborhood, giving up any gifts for themselves.
So this Christmas instead of your usual way of sending money away, decide how you might help others closer to home. Perhaps you can be creative and help the starving in Africa and the needy down the street.
Merry Christmas everyone!