Thursday, November 15, 2007
We miss the joy and peace of Christmas as the flood of shopping and frantic activity overtakes us. Consumerism and materialism win the day for most of us, and this time of year gets filled with a hyper-busyness unmatched by any other time of year. What happened to doing more resting than doing during late November and December? What happened to spontaneous time with friends and family this time of year, as contrasted with the bulging calendars that allow absolutely no time for any of us simply to be and think deeply about the meaning of the season. And on top of that, spending goes largely unchecked, with many of us never stopping to think of those VISA, Mastercard, Discover or store credit card bills we'll get in January and February and March... Charging Christmas gifts, the real gift that keeps giving and giving and giving, well into the new year. Try something new this Christmas and give someone a gift from Heifer International http://www.heifer.org/site/c.edJRKQNiFiG/b.204586/or Compassion International http://www.compassion.com/default.htm or the ELCA Gift Catalog http://elca.org/scriptlib/DS/Giving/express.html We all don't really NEED anything this Christmas, it's just stuff we want because, well, we've been taught to want stuff ever since we were little. It's been wired into us and it's hard to let us go. So, for the person who has everything, give them a gift that will benefit others. And for your Christmas list, ask for gift-givers to make a contribution that will make a world of difference. I think it fits more of the reason we celebrate the season after all. Peace.
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
This is just a start or 'only a beginning' to take a line from a song by Chicago from a long time ago! One of the biggest challenges in the world, in my humble opinion, is how we handle and manage the resources God has given all of us. Mother Teresa said, "God didn't create poverty, people did when they decided not to share." Or, better yet, when Jesus said, "it's more blessed to give than to receive." None of us are owners...of anything. It's all His, and He retains ownership. That's a great place to start!