EVERYTHING is becoming more expensive these days, and a lot of us are having to ‘tighten our belts’ and give more thought to what we spend our money on.
This year I have decided that I am not sending Christmas cards, for a number of reasons encouraged somewhat by the huge hike in postage costs. Neither am I scouring the shops for that elusive Christmas present for someone who already has more than enough ‘stuff’. (A real Scrooge, I hear you say!)
Instead, I have decided that for everyone I would normally buy a present for, I will fill a shoebox and send it via Blythswood Care to some adult or child in Eastern Europe who has very little and for whom a Blythswood box will mean so much.
It’s hard for us to believe - people becoming excited about receiving a shoebox filled with bits and bobs when we expect to receive perhaps the latest piece of technology, games console, expensive perfume and other such items. Which of us would be satisfied with a shoebox?
Jesus’s disciples once asked him to teach them to pray, and part of the prayer he taught them says this: “Give us today our daily bread and forgive us our sins.”
We are coming up for that time of year when within the churches we will be celebrating Harvest and giving thanks to God for the harvest of land and sea which allows us to be fed.
Jesus is suggesting that our thanks to God for all good things around us should be a daily occurrence rather than just once a year, thus acknowledging our total dependence on God for all that we have. Then we need to seek His forgiveness because we not only take all His gifts very much for granted, but we are greedy with them, too.
The problem is, we have so much that we have forgotten God and we have forgotten those who have less.
One way to remember and give thanks for all that we enjoy each day is to give something away, and that is what I want to do this Christmas by filling shoeboxes with gifts for those who have no idea what it would be like to live somewhere else, like Scotland, where we have access to so much.
Our God is loving and merciful, and wants His children to have good things but He expects us to share His gifts with others.
Rev. Mary Patterson