| Peter Cook
It is that time of year again. The shops are stocked, Christmas lights are flickering, and once again, we are aware that the end of the year is near.
It is also the time of year to stop and think. What are we celebrating? What values do you wish to promote and cement into the hearts of your children?
At Largest Heart, we firmly believe that Christmas is not about the glitter and presents.
Instead, it is about what Christ has done for us. The best way to celebrate is to be His hands and feet and to care for those who need it most.
We want to give you a few ideas. What can you do this festive season to serve your community and bring light and hope to others?
- Find your special gift.
Perhaps you don't have to find it. Maybe you know what it is already.
If you want to serve your community this Christmas, don't discard your own talents. Remember, God gave you a specific skill for a reason! He wants you to serve Him with it.
- Do you love accounting? One of your local charities will sure need your help.
- Are you an artist? Why not volunteer to paint a Christmas mural in your neighborhood?
Even if you feel you don’t have many talents, but you can drive a car, do it! Drive someone in need to a doctor's appointment or the supermarket.
- Spare a thought for the elderly
Many elderly people across America are forced to spend Christmas alone. Isolated, with no bus services running, they are stranded. One website’s research revealed that more than 80% of older people just want company over Christmas.
Perhaps you and your family can:
- Visit someone in a nursing home and take a small present (slippers, some lotion, or a throw blanket.) Or just come in and say hello. Spending time talking and listening.
- Take someone on a Christmas day walk
- Share a drink with an elderly neighbor
- Offer to drive someone to a family member on Christmas day.
- Some people must be on duty to serve us.
Hospitals, fire stations or police stations do not close on Christmas day. We depend on these services to be there for us in times of need.
Why not take some delicacies for the personnel to enjoy on Christmas day? Small children can make a card to say ‘thank you’ for their service.
Don’t forget the postal service! Your mail carrier sure would appreciate a small treat waiting in the mailbox.
- Love thy neighbor
It is often shocking to hear how many people don't even know who their neighbors are. This Christmas time surprise your neighbors with a visit and some baked goods.
If it is a young couple, volunteer as a family to babysit their children so that they can go and do their Christmas shopping. You can even invite your neighbors to Christmas dinner if they are spending the day alone.
“Neighbor' can be anywhere including those living in the same house as you. Do random acts of kindness to serve your own family. Feed the dog, even if it is not your turn. A sibling can make another one a cup of hot chocolate before bedtime. Get creative with ideas!
- Donations are always welcome.
Charities and non-profits depend on your donations over Christmas. Traditionally, this is the time of year when people are more willing to donate and give.
Call a family conference, do some research on non-profits in your area and decide who and what you are going to support. You can give money, but you can also donate your time. In this way, you can also serve your community. Nonprofits are always looking for a few good men, women and children to help pay-it-forward. The human experience was meant to be shared so go out and give of your time. I promise you’ll get more out of it then you could ever imagine!!
Our previous blog highlighted some non-profits in addiction and mental health recovery that you can support but this season give to the cause that your passionate about. We’re passionate about raising awareness for mental illness and addiction and would love for you to donate to Largest Heart. We know there are a ton of other great non-profits doing some incredible stuff out there so get out there and donate! You can verify them at sites like https://www.charitynavigator.org/ and make informed donating decisions.
We have big plans for 2020, which we can only put in effect with your help. Together we can make a huge difference!
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!