December 23, 2009
A giving spirit this Christmas


The entire nation reacted with outrage last week when word spread that burglars had broken into the local Salvation Army headquarters and had stolen care packages which had been prepared for some of the less fortunate among us.{{more}}

Most of the beneficiaries of those packages were nameless, faceless individuals. Yet many of us, in the spirit of Christmas, reacted immediately and gave generously to make it possible for the Army to meet their quota for 2009.

There is always a need for generosity, for as Jesus himself said, the poor will always be with us. Poverty here is not necessarily material poverty, but includes poverty of spirit, health and emotion.

Sometimes it seems as if it is easier to reach out to people we do not know, than to show compassion to those close to us. What about our co-worker or the child who lives next door? Even in our own families, there are those who could benefit from a little extra attention or a listening ear, especially at this time of the year when the sting of loneliness is particularly acute.

Yes, times are tough and we are all have our personal challenges. However, from the little we do have, we should try to share with those who have even less than we do. There is no older or more joyous Christmas tradition than that of giving, a tradition which dates back to the three wise men from the East.

However, if we stop for a while and consider the humble manner in which Jesus came into the world, it would come home to us that all the frenzied commercialism and activity going on around us is really not what Christmas is about. Store bought presents and feasting on Christmas Day are fine, but they result in fleeting pleasure. What we all really want is to love and know that we are loved.

Let’s open our hearts and homes to someone in need this Christmas.

A happy Christmas to everyone. May your home and hearts be blessed.