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Day 10 – How to Give Priceless Gifts for Christmas

DCD-day-10I was talking to a friend after church and she shared something that had been on her heart.  How do we convey our spiritual beliefs to our children?  That is a great question.  As I was thinking about Doing Christmas Differently, I wanted to share an experience that made Christmas special for our children. Perhaps it will help you communicate what you really believe to the next generation of believers.

 Serve.

A few years back we participated in a Christmas Outreach Challenge for our church.  The task was simple.  We were given an envelope with $75 in it.  We had the names of three children and their ages.  We had to spend $25/child and see how far we could make it stretch for their gifts.  The pastor patted us on the back and said, “Get as much as you can.”  We thought it would be nice if we took our children along with us to the toy store to shop for someone else.  – WHAT WERE WE THINKING! We were able to get each child three or four modest gifts.  I remember my daughter begging for this one doll.  She didn’t want to wrap it.  She held on to it until the last minute.  She cried when we took it away.  We  wrapped each gift and made arrangements to drop them off to the family.

We decided to take our children with us to drop the gifts off.  I remember praying in the car before ringing the apartment building buzzer.  When we got to the apartment, we met the recipients.  Three young girls 4, 6, and 9 years old.  They were being raised by their great-grandmother.  I can still see the table top plastic Christmas tree, adorned with built in lights.  It was bare underneath.  The great-grandmother shared with us some of the hardships of raising such young girls.  She shared her struggles with a smile, saying that she would keep trying to give the girls what they needed.  We learned then that the gifts we delivered would be all there was for Christmas.

When we got back in the car I kept thinking about the family.  I kept praying.  My husband and I begin reaching out to others to see if they were interested in partnering with us to bring a few more gifts to this family.  We delivered three huge sacks of gifts to this family, but what amazed me most was that my daughter’s heart changed.  Instead of trying to keep the gifts for herself, she began offering her own toys.   She wanted to give away her most precious possessions to make another little girls smile.

I cried as she helped pack up the gifts.  Something changed in her, because though she was young, she could see the impact of giving.  She experienced the words of Christ when we went up to that apartment and saw the joy on the face of the great-grandmother and the anticipation of the girls, ” It is better to give than to receive.”  Since that day she has been a giver. It’s just something she gets in a deeper place now.

 Click to Tweet So, if you want to Do Christmas Differently with your children – find a way to serve!

How do you teach your children about the true meaning of Christmas. Please share it with us.  Leave a Comment. 

 How do you teach the true meaning of Christmas to your children? Learn here http://t.co/wHP3ehQuMe #DOCHRISTMASDIFFERENTLY #DCD

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20 Comments

  • What a beautiful story! Kids can be so generous in spirit when they see other children in need. Merry Christmas!
  • What a lovely post. I feel at peace after reading it. What a great question as well. Every day I wonder what our children really think about the holiday season. Is it just the increase in goodies in the house and around town, the music that we can all sing along to, the pretty decorations, the calm that appears to be in our house with our glowy lights. Today we are going shopping to buy a toy each for our children to donate. I believe modelling and my behaviour will encourage our children to be kind not just in December but through out the year. And during this time truly be grateful for all our blessings.
    • Thank you Megs. Jesus wants us to be generous givers. You are right – we are to be generous all year long. Happy Giving and Merry Christmas!
  • We love teaching our children through the Bible. We also try to do something for someone else around Christmas as a share the love gift.
    • I love the idea of a “share the love” gift. I think we are going to adopt that in our household. Thank you Erin for the idea! Merry Christmas.
  • This is great. I love giving back at Christmas especially to families and kids in need.
  • I think it’s important to teach giving back to kids while they are young.
  • This is a great story. My son is almost one, so I’m not quite sure how we will be doing Christmas when he’s aware of it all… But I like the idea of finding children in need.
  • What a touching story.. 3 young girls by their great-grandmother is so touching to me.
  • We try to teach kids that there is so much more to Christmas than just gifts and good food… friends and family and the most important part of it
  • Thanks for sharing your story and teaching your family that serving is a gift.
  • I hope the Christmas spirit is still there in every family. Serving is one of the character of Christmas
    • Thank you for your comment Manu. This is the season for serving. I’m praying it lasts beyond Christmas into the whole year. Thanks for reading.
  • What a lovely story! It is more important to teach about giving back to kids. In fact giving back is the most priceless gift. Thanks for sharing this.
  • I have really been struggling with relaying the true meaning of Christmas to my Littles. It seems they are so wrapped up in the commercial aspect of it all. I will keep at it though!
    • Hi Brittany. Take them with you to serve. Let them see the joy in giving – first hand. Keep at it. We are praying for you!
  • Thank you for sharing your memory! It is hard for my son to give up something he really likes too. I have been practicing giving with him also but it is easier to give to someone you actually know than to just some nameless and faceless “poor child”.
    • Hi Joanna, Serving personally helps change the outlook of the child. In time they will learn to give sight unseen. Until then, take him along for the serving. Thanks for your comment.

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