"See A Need. Take Action."
My guest for today's episode is absolutely no one. Friends, it's just me. I wanted to discuss a topic that's been on my heart for the last several months.
Over the summer I was asked to write an article for the Christmas issue of World Vision magazine and talk about how all of us can do something powerful in the world when we operate from a place of radical generosity. As I brainstormed what to write about, I thought about a sweet little book Rooney has in her room about St. Nicholas of Myra. We read it here and there throughout the year, but now it carries a special meaning for our family this holiday season. The book tells the story of the 4th century Christian bishop who inspired the Christmas gift-giving character of Santa Claus.
Born in Patara, a land that is part of present-day Turkey, circa 280 A.D., a man left with a large sum of money when his parents passed away used it to help the poor. After his own death in 344, the legend of his generosity grew. St. Nicholas transformed into the fabled character Santa Claus, the beloved old man who brings presents to children around the world on Christmas Eve. Over the years, while advertising and culture have popularized the image of the jolly, red-suited sleigh operator, many influences have made Santa what he is today.
It’s surprising how easy it can be to get caught up in the commercialization of Christmas and lose sight of what is truly important. I’m guilty of working tirelessly to try and set the right tone and atmosphere for my family during the holiday, without thinking beyond what lies inside and what hangs outside the four walls of our home. We end up devoting a lot of time and energy into placing decorations, preparing events, preserving traditions and planning meaningful experiences for those closest to us, all the while missing the real blessing that comes from thinking like the original St. Nick. If we aren’t careful, our attention can quickly switch to a focus on what we want, leaving little room for thinking of others and what they need.
This year, our family decided to take a few intentional steps back to realign our hearts with the true meaning of Christmas and the spirit of the legendary gift-giver. We wanted to make some changes this holiday season to awaken the joy that comes with generosity. It was time to decide, as a family, how we could ask, “What can we give?” instead of, “What can we get?”
So we decided to do what I'm calling a SANTA Switch.
See A Need. Take Action.
We're going to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas by:
1) encouraging each other to notice the needs of others and then
2) empowering each other to meet those needs
Check out today's episode to find out how you can make the SANTA Switch a fun and intentional Christmas tradition that flips the focus from "What can I get?" to "What can I GIVE?"