Give with meaning in 2013
In the 20th chapter of the book of Acts, verse 35 it says that “it is more blessed to give than to receive.”
I know a lot of people who would debate that. They prefer to receive than to give.
This article is for the people who have already accepted the statement that it is better to give than to receive. To these people I want to encourage you to make this season a giving season.
This is not a suggestion to run out and buy a lot of gifts for all the people you know. You may not be able to afford it. If you can and you feel compelled to do so, please don’t let me stop you. When you can use what you have to put a smile on people’s face it is money well spent; especially people who really need what you are giving them.
But those of you who don’t have the resources to give as you would like to, from a financial standpoint, there are still creative ways you can give in a meaningful way.
You can give of your time to help someone. There are any number of organizations and even private individuals who will be reaching out to others and they could use some of your time.
Some of the most exciting times I have heard people say they have had, have been while they were selflessly helping someone else especially in a group setting. If you have done it before you know how rewarding that experience can be. If you have never done it, why not try?
You can also give of your presence. By this I mean visiting someone and interacting with them on a one-on-one basis. There are so many people who live alone or in situations where they have little one on one interaction with others for any prolonged period of time. This is a good time to spend some time with people like these.
No time makes lonely times more difficult to bear than during the holiday seasons. Thanksgiving, Christmas and the New Year are tough times for a lot of people because their disconnection from other people feels even more acute. They might not be in a position to reach out to others, but if you can reach out to them, give them the gift of your presence.
When you take time out to see someone it could make all the difference in the world.
You can also give the gift of your creativity. The best gifts are not always the ones you go in the store and purchase. I know I won’t win any awards from retailers when I say this, but it’s true. Some of you are very talented and you can make things with your hands. I have walked into many homes and on the walls I can see the handiwork of a friend or family member, which the homeowner is always proud to identify.
Working with your hands takes time, it shows caring on your part and what you produce represents you in a more personal way than a store bought gift.
But there are other ways in which you can give the gift of creativity. A group of us were very fond of a couple who gave themselves to us and others in teaching, helping, and supporting us in our spiritual development. We put together and gave them an all expense three-hour limousine tour of the city with food and beverages included. For a long time they never stopped thanking us. I am sure you can think of other variations or even more creative ways of making some one feel more special.
This is the time when we give, but let us give with thoughtfulness, creativity and in a way that will leave a lasting impact.