This post is part of the series How to Have a Frugally Green Christmas. See the previous posts here.
Unfortunately, so often the Holidays can become a season of selfishness. We get caught up in our busy calendar, what we want to give (and receive) as Christmas gifts, how we can have a merrier Christmas and a happier New Year. And I’m just as guilty as the next person.
I have been thinking about how to combat this selfishness for our family and myself and I think one of the obvious ways is through service to others. Serving others gets us outside of ourselves and helps to remind us of the ways we are blessed and the things we have to be thankful for. It is a great way to teach children that Christmas is not all about them and what they are getting for presents. When you serve you may realize that you don’t really need to have or do all of the things on your Christmas list this year. And that can save you time and money!
There are lots and lots of different ways to serve during the holidays; you just have to find the one that is right for you and your family. It could be serving a meal at the homeless shelter, buying a Angel Tree gift for a child whose parent is in prison, going caroling, inviting a lonely neighbor over for a meal – there is no limit to the ways that we can serve those around us.
And serving doesn’t have to be something that you just do with your family. Get together a group of people and figure out how you can serve together. Jer and I lead a small group for our church each week at our house, and we decided that as a group we are going to adopt a local family to provide them with food and gifts for their children for Christmas. My parents have a Christmas Eve tradition of caroling with a group of friends. They go to nursing homes and people who are shut-in and not able to leave their homes and sing Christmas carols. I got to participate for a few years while I was in college (they started the tradition after I left for school) and it was always so touching to see how much joy we brought to people just by singing them a few songs. Serving with others adds that much more meaning to the service you are doing.
When you are serving you are spending time that you could be using to do other things, like baking cookies, shopping for presents or wrapping gifts. And we all know we have lots to do this time of year! But instead, you are choosing to give of yourself and your time to the benefit of others and not just focusing on your own agenda. What better way to celebrate the gift of Jesus, who gave of Himself when He came into our world as a baby!
There are just 2 weeks until Christmas! Find a time today or this weekend to figure out how you and your family (and friends too!) can serve others this Holiday Season!