Christmas is not about me.
Say it with me now.
Christmas is not about me.
We can know this in theory, but beneath our pile of presents to wrap and recipes to bake and household decorations to hang, it sure can feel like the family’s holiday cheer depends on us.
Newsflash, mommas. Jesus didn’t come to frost cookies. He came to love lost people.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
Could it be? Real holiday cheer is as simple as showing God’s love to others. One of the most effective ways I’ve found to do this is through acts of kindness.
What is an act of kindness? It’s anything from a simple, spontaneous gesture to pre-calculated generosity designed to show genuine kindness to another person—either someone you know, or a stranger. These acts of kindness might include delivering a meal to a neighbor, making cards for nursing home residents, passing out candy canes to store clerks, and so much more.
My inspiration for acts of kindness comes from fellow blogger and author Courtney DeFeo’s “Light ‘Em Up for Christmas” campaign. She provides wonderful resources including a planning guide and printables to help families spread joy and generosity.
Using many of Courtney’s suggestions, my daughters and I came up with this list.
Kopitzke Family Acts of Kindness for Christmas 2014
1. Shovel snow for our neighbor lady
2. Bring treats to the police station on Christmas Eve
3. Tape money to a bubble gum machine (with a note)
4. Tape money to the parking meters downtown (with a note)
5. Write a special letter to an out-of-state friend
6. Hide money in a library movie (with a note)
7. Donate a bag of toys to charity
8. Call cousins, aunts/uncles or other family members to say you love them
9. Leave a note and a treat for the mail carrier
10. Bring treats to the doctor and dentist offices
11. Pay for the people behind us in line at Starbucks or McDonald’s
12. Take a treat to the school janitor
Now, as a mom, my underlying question of course is—what are my kids learning? Are these acts of kindness impressing on their hearts and teaching them that indeed “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:25)?
Well, yesterday, at a random, unexpected moment, I got my answer. Sitting at my desk in the home office, I overheard my four-year-old in the living room tell her babysitter: “Did you know Christmas isn’t all about presents? It’s about kindness and how we celebrate God’s birthday!”
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