I started a tradition four years ago with the birth of my first grandchild—a grandson. And now I also have an almost 2-year-old granddaughter. They are both sweet, loving children—and quite normal, for they love receiving presents.
While I cherish the fun of buying them special Christmas gifts, I truly longed for a way of showing them the real meaning of the Christmas season. I know from my own experience the joy that comes from giving to someone who is in need, and I wanted my grandchildren to have this experience as well. Thus the tradition: buying a gift for someone in need each year as one of their Christmas presents.
Here’s my hope: As they begin to grow older, they will be just as excited on Christmas morning to discover who they helped this year as they will be for any of their other presents. And as young adults and eventually a father and mother themselves they will continue this tradition of giving a Christmas gift to others.
My grandson’s presents over the past 4 years have been 2 chickens to a family in Africa, a doll to a child in need in the USA, a warm coat for a refugee boy in Syria, and this year—a winter care kit for a refugee child in Europe facing a freezing winter.
For my granddaughter, her gift last year was 2 weeks of milk for a hungry baby—and this year, a loving-care package for an orphan girl in India.
I read a devotional earlier today entitled, “Life is Best Lived When You’re Awake.” The author’s premise: Appreciate all that God has given you. Pay attention to the wonder of being alive. Notice and help the people around you—especially those in need. Then he asked, “Are you awake?”
God bless you as you think about and give to others in need this glorious season—as we celebrate the Birth of our Lord! Merry Christmas.
Gift ideas for children in need all over the world can be found at samaritanspurse.org and worldvisiongifts.org. You can make a difference for a child or a family in need for under $25.