Wednesday, December 21, 2011


This is a sample of what it looks like to provide holiday gifts to 232 (the final count) families who have experienced domestic violence. Donors were amazing this year! My heart was extremely full as I got to see the look on people's faces when they received exactly what they had asked for. One woman who has been especially down the past few weeks actually jumped up and down when she learned she had enough money in gift cards to buy a pressure cooker:)
So I am really blessed to actually get two Christmases. This is one of those times when it is truly better to give than to receive.
My experience with all of this has left me with an overwhelming testimony of service and impressed upon me that it is one of the things I want to make sure any future child of mine learns. I am always so in awe of children who understand the value of putting others first sometimes and wowed by the parents who are able to instill that. Last week in the midst of all the holiday party planning, a mother brought her daughter, who helped to carry loads of bags of goodies that would be given to other children. Later in the week, while visiting my grandmother in the nursing home, a group of carolers from a local church came to sing and among them were two kids. One was probably too young to understand or choose, even, where he was but the other  may have an enduring memory of her parents making service to others a priority and the way it made her feel. Finally, I got a little emotional when the news actually reported a nice story: a little boy donating his "life savings" to buy Christmas gifts for his friends' family who had just lost everything when their mobile home burned down. When the community caught wind of his donation, others matched it and were able to provide a thousand dollars worth of items, including essentials, to this family.
I know there are a lot of holiday sentiment and well wishes being thrown around this week but service is something we can all do all year long. We all have unique strengths that were given to us to help fill in others voids. Use yours wisely.
And, in conclusion, just to lighten things up, I will use a quote from a reality tv show....remember who is writing here!! "Live a life of love and service."-Bob Forrest (Celebrity Rehab on VH1)

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