I have to chuckle at some of the myriad holiday songs. After hearing "It Ain't Christmas If There is No Snow" (or something like that), I'm thinking it really wasn't snowing in Bethlehem the night Jesus was born.
No Santa, reindeer, candy canes or IPods were around either. Just a simple, quiet, manger birth. Since this is the season when we celebrate the birth of Christ, It seems fitting to search out activities that will honor his birth and the first thing that comes to mind is doing some type of charitable work or contribution.
I recently came across a website that seems to be a good place to start reflecting on Christmas called "Citizen Sam." This organization looks out for our military personnel, providing them with things that will make their holiday a little cheerier and more comfortable. Everything from a simple "thank you" card (to be included in one of their many packages headed overseas) to recommended stocking stuffers and hand knitted items would be greatly appreciated. A box of 15 stockings can be shipped for only $30.00! The group also takes donations for postage to send the packages to the troops and uses very little money to run the organization. Please check them out at http://www.http//CitizenSam.org.
Nowadays, we also see many restaurants and shops displaying "giving trees" with tags asking for specific items for someone in need. Maybe your contribution could be grabbing a tag and picking up an extra gift for someone you don't even know.
In times of very high unemployment, there will be many more folks seeking aid from different sources and food banks are desperately trying to keep up with requests. That is a good place to either volunteer or give a donation where people have so much less than we do. I personally know a gentleman who works at our local food bank every week. I want him to know how much we appreciate his generosity and sensitivity in helping those in need. Thanks Jack! You're great!
Lastly, please don't forget the animals. You can click the purple button on
to feed a critter for free or make donations to help any number of abandoned animals.
Let's look past the flash and glitz of the season and focus on the fact that Christmas is really a wonderful birthday celebration. No matter your religious affiliation, what better way to observe the day than with acts of pure, unselfish kindness?
What's YOUR favorite charity? Tell me about it.