While we’re asked far more often about what we want for Christmas, the question about what we want to give is certainly far greater. Yeah, yeah, that whole “it’s more blessed to give” thing again. But it really, really is!
Not only is there a greater fullness that comes with giving than receiving even the most generous drop into our big bucket of wants, but it is actually part of the nature of joys — they’re just plain more fun when they’re shared!
Making a List
What’s on your “Grown-Up Christmas List,” this year? Perhaps yours is similar to singer Amy Grant’s as seen in the video below.
Or maybe your “Grown-Up Christmas List” is more specific, geared toward healing specific hurts & unmet needs of people you love. As their names and faces flit across your mind, let the specific hurts & unmet needs run through ink to paper or let your fingers tap dance them across your screen.
Once they’re translated into black and white, something tangible, the hurts & needs will seem more real. Don’t let that overwhelm you: You probably can’t meet all those needs, especially if they’re as far-reaching as the ones on Grant’s list. At the very least, you can take them before the Throne of God. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
Asking Your Kids
If you’re like me, you cringe at yet another suggestion that your kids add to their already extensive “wish list” or write another letter to the North Pole. But maybe you haven’t thoughtfully countered the greed-inducing activities with productive ones. While 64% of parents think Santa traditions fuel greed and selfishness, only 27% of us ask our children what they want to give more than we ask what they want to get.
It seems that how we talk about gifts and giving really does matter. What do your kids want to give? Maybe you hear the cha-ching of cash registers racking up even more of a holiday bill, if you do this, but stick with me for a minute.
Forming a Plan
Especially if you’re reading this on the verge of this year’s Christmas, the idea of a giving list might add to the pressure you’re already feeling. If you didn’t have enough time or money to help with any of the big needs on your “Grown-Up Christmas List” this year, it can help you make giving goals for next year. And if you’re like most Americans, that won’t happen if you wait until next December; it will mean being disciplined starting January 1.
Maybe you’ll be cutting out a restaurant meal each month to commit to making regular gifts toward alleviating world hunger. Or maybe you’ll work a little extra to help a neighbor save up for a plane ticket so she can see her grandkids at Christmastime next year. Perhaps it will mean cutting out unnecessary plans to create more margin for prayer and writing cards for encouragement for those who have experienced loss. Or just taking those with hurts & needs out for coffee to listen to their stories and share in their grief.
Since 2000, eGiving.com has served to assist in funding Christian ministries with effective strategies & tools of electronic giving (recurring & online giving). eGiving.com serves both churches as well as para-church ministries (including schools, pregnancy centers, missions, and works of mercy) throughout the United States and internationally.
To learn more about how eGiving.com’s web-based tools can help your ministry accomplish its vision, visit our website at www.eGiving.com or contact us toll free by calling (888) 780-4483. We’ll be glad to discuss the options available to you and help answer any questions you have.