Tag Archives: Gift-giving practices

The Gift of Giving

Autumn brings us many beautiful colours in nature. The world seems to bring us golden leaves. Getting colder and getting more wind and rain we like to spend more time in a warm living room. Getting darker we look for literal cosy lights and spiritual light.

We come closer to a time of year that people everywhere in the Western World, get very excited about giving. It is often said that part of the fun is in the giving, in watching the expression on the face of a loved one as they open the present, or in the delight of a child as they play with a new toy.

The Bible agrees that giving is an important part of our human existence. It is within the capacity of all of us to make someone else happy by giving – either a present, or a hug, or even some time and attention. There are plenty of Bible stories that talk about being generous and selfless in the way that we give. Think of the widow woman, for example, who gave her two mites into the temple treasury, which was all she had to live on (see Mark 12v41-44). This example to us means even more when we think that she was not necessarily an old widow; she could have had children to support. And yet the giving was the important thing, not the amount, and not what she got in return, just the giving itself.

Too often we focus on the value of material things, and what we accumulate in our houses. The focus is on the object, not on the action. Jesus Christ lived his whole life as a gift to others – constantly serving, providing, healing and comforting – as well as pointing out the way to please God was to do likewise. Ultimately this is the way the Gospel of John describes his final act of self-sacrifice: as a gift not from Jesus, but from God.

“God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3v16)

Should we be giving more this year than presents and cards? What could we do with our time, our love, and our thoughts and prayers?
Do we value those as much as the goods we purchase in shopping centres? And how do you value the ultimate gift that is offered to you?

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ.” (Romans 6v23)

Part taken from the article “The Gift of Giving” by the Burton Christadelphians

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Preceding

The Proper Place of Excess

Looking for a shepherd for the sheep and goats

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Additional reading

  1. A season of gifts
  2. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  3. Sancta Claus is not God
  4. Christmas customs – Are They Christian?

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Related

  1. Make #GivingTuesday More Than Just a Giving Day
  2. How to foster an environment of thankfulness!
  3. Lean in…and Give
  4. Advent of the Coming King . . .
  5. 10 Best gifts for Mom this Christmas

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Welfare matters

Family happiness and little things we do

The actions we undertake daily and seem to be such ‘little things’ we do in our everyday life, go further than we anticipate in solidifying or weakening the relationships in families. At the end of the track they proof to be very important and a necessity to have been structured in solid clay.

Many may think that annual family vacations have to be going abroad and that we all have to be partakers of worldly traditional feasts, like Christmas celebrations and Valentine’s Day gift-giving practices which have become integral consumption rituals in contemporary families. These man made artificial celebrations are no guaranty to family happiness. It is a wrong idea to think a family can not be happy when it does not celebrate Christmas, Easter or any other heathen or so called Christian feast.

Those who want to keep to God’s Will and as such abstain from the heathen feasts like Halloween, Christmas, Easter, still can enjoy very happy moments together. All the material presents may be very nice surprises with bring joy, but they also can be given at other moments. And all family members should be aware that it is not the material which brings happiness, but the feeling of being together and sharing a happy time with each other.

We have been socialised by media, family and other social institutions to dedicate more attention to these rather conspicuous consumption experiences and have gradually become less concerned of the importance of the mundane, everyday consumption behaviour to our relationships and overall family wellbeing.

In many families we can see that parent buy their children. When divorced and one parent gives something the other parent want to give something more expensive and bigger.

we fail to recognise and appreciate the underpinning significance of these frequently taken-for-granted consumption experiences to happiness, satisfaction and stability in our family relationships. Instead we seek to construct family bonding through perhaps rather superficial, conspicuous consumption acts such as buying expensive gifts for loved ones, committing to elaborative annual family holidays and following extensive Christmas rituals.

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Preceding articles:

Families with four or more kids most happiest

How to Raise a Happy Child

 

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Additional reading:

  1. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  2. Focus on outward appearances
  3. Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
  4. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  5. Thanksgivukkah and Advent
  6. Autumn traditions for 2014 – 6 Bonfire night
  7. Halloween custom of the nations
  8. Autumn traditions for 2014 – 1: Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet
  9. Christian values, traditions, real or false stories, pure and upright belief
  10. Why we do not keep to a Sabbath or a Sunday or Lord’s Day #3 Days to be kept holy or set apart
  11. A season of gifts
  12. Irminsul, dies natalis solis invicti, birthday of light, Christmas and Saturnalia
  13. Wishing lanterns and Christmas
  14. Christmas, Saturnalia and the birth of Jesus
  15. God’s Special Gift
  16. Christmas customs – Are They Christian?
  17. The Evolution Of Passover–Past To Present
  18. Who Celebrates Easter as Religious Holiday
  19. Eostre, Easter, White god, chocolate eggs, Easter bunnies and metaphorical resurrection
  20. Easter: Origins in a pagan Christ
  21. 14-15 Nisan and Easter
  22. 14 Nisan a day to remember #4 A Lamb slain
  23. Easter holiday, fun and rejoicing
  24. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  25. Seven Bible Feasts of JHWH

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Filed under Lifestyle, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs, Religious affairs, Social affairs