I am beyond thrilled to report that since my posting ("give freely"), not only has my family decided to forgo gifts in favor of donating to World Vision, I have also received many responses from friends that had already decided to do the same thing with their families. I can't remember the last time I have ever been so excited for a Christmas (probably about 18-20 years ago when visions of Santa kept me awake for almost the entire night)! Can you imagine what an impact we could make if everyone decided to ditch the ugly sweaters, useless electronics, flashy diamonds, showy cars, etc., and instead invest in causes around the world? Christmas might begin to have a fraction of the impact on the world that it did 2,008 years ago.
Christ came on this day so that we might have life and have it more abundantly. Unfortunately, it has warped into an excuse to create lengthy wish lists that in turn, create crazed shoppers so frantic they don't even remember why this "holiday" is even on the calendar. What a travesty we, as a culture, have committed! Instead of sharing Christ's love with those hurting around us, we blindly (but ever so dilligently) press on to the next store in hopes of finding the next item on our never-ending list (and hopefully finding something for ourselves along the way). You must know that I am not preaching to you, I am preaching to myself. No one needs to hear this more than I do, and no one is more guilty of blind consumerism as I am. While it may be true that I search out the good bargain and am quite frugal when it comes to purchases, I am ashamed to admit that even in my most sincere efforts to keep perspective, I still have a closet bursting with clothes and so many shoes they don't even fit into their designated space. Just because the shirt is 6.99 does NOT mean I need another 5 of them to add to the almost 100. Forgive me...I know better...we all do.