I adore the spirit of the holiday seasons.....Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc., but have come to realize that it is our emphasis on presents at Christmas that make this such a distinct time of year. My husband and I give regularly to our local shelters for homeless men and homeless/battered women and children. Plus, as the grateful wife of a Navy veteran who survived not one but three active combat zones, I personally give to the USO a few times a year. So at the holidays, the only fundraisers that REALLY pull my heart strings are the men and women of the Salvation Army who have dedicated their lives to the "Army" and who are out ringing that bell come rain, snow, sleet or time of day. I've had a few family members who were members of the Salvation Army and they worked year round, not just at Xmas. People aren't any hungrier or colder or poorer or lonelier during the holidays. We simply put it in their face more at this time of year. Give year round like it's always the holidays the best you can and do something extra special for kids during the Christmas season. That has helped me let go of the "holiday charity guilt." I don't remember anything in the world's scriptures about being nicer in December. I think we're called on to help the "poor" all the time. And it's OK if sometimes we're the "poor" and sometimes we're the givers. It just makes us compassionate. CynthiaView Thread
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