In the past, we’ve talked about donating our time or talent or money to various organization, or charities. And we’ve also talked about showing random acts of kindness to everyone around us. But today I want to put a special twist gift giving. Join me today as we gift the burden rather than give a gift!
Has there ever been a moment in your life when you sat at the kitchen table with the bills laid out before you wondering whether to pay the electric bill or a Christmas present for your little boy? Or maybe have you ever known a family who has seen their entire home destroyed by a fire, tornado, earthquake, mudslide, or other tragedy? Or do you know a co-worker who was laid off just before Christmas due to budget cuts? Or perhaps you know a neighbor who spends every waking hour as a caregiver for their dying mother?
I want you to think about each of these scenario cases and more. Imagine yourself in their shoes. Imagine how they must feel not be able to go out and pick something to give to their children or spouse for Christmas. Look around you. Pay attention to what people are saying about the situation they are in right now. Listen while you are at work, at church, at the grocery store, in your neighborhood, to your friends, etc. Find someone today who will not be able to buy gifts for their children today. Then I propose to gift the burden rather than give gift!
What do I mean? I mean that instead of you going out and buying presents for the co-worker who just lost his job this Christmas and can barely afford to pay the electric bill, that you pay the electric bill (the burden) and allow him the joy to take the money and buy gifts for his family this Christmas. Gift the burden!! Or for the caregiver who spends every waking moment with her sick mother, offer to sit with her mother for the day, so she can experience the joy of going shopping for her family for Christmas. Again gift the burden!!!
So many times we are the selfish ones because we see a need and want to experience the joy of giving the gift ourselves, but oh what joy we can also find in gifting the burden, so that other might experience the joy of giving during this Christmas. Advent this week is all about joy!! So gift the burden rather than give the gift!!!