“For it is in giving that we receive.”
-St. Francis of Assisi
I love the Christmas story by O. Henry of the married couple Jim and Della Dillingham. They are very poor and don’t have enough money to buy each other Christmas presents. Jim sells his watch to buy hair combs for Della’s long, beautiful hair and Della sells her hair to buy Jim a chain for his beloved watch. So when Christmas arrives their gifts to each other are no longer relevant. This story illustrates that whatever the gifts – the most important thing is when they are given with love and consideration.
Most of us were taught as children that it is better to give than to receive. So why do people give? Giving teaches us to look beyond ourselves. It teaches us to be of greater service to others through kind words, deeds or actual gifts. It also makes the world a better place. We don’t do good because we feel good. We feel good because we do good.
Here are some additional gifts you may consider giving:
Give an experience as a gift. Experiences create memories.
Consider giving anonymously to those in need. This is one of the most selfless and rewarding acts of giving.
Create a family project that you can work on together or serve together on a humanitarian mission. This creates family unity and quality time is spent with each other.
Give your time/attention. Time is probably my greatest commodity. When I give it to someone I do my best to give them my full attention.
When we die, we don’t take what we have. We take what we gave and who we became in the process. So keep on giving – not just this Christmas season but all year long.