As we prepare for the wonderful event of families gathering to spend time with each other, giving and receiving presents, eating well beyond what we should, enjoying a variety of drinks, we forget how sheltered we are from many of the realities of the world.
Christmas for many is not a wonderful event. It is just another day in which they do not know where their food will come from, if they will be able to stay warm, and another day of loneliness and vacant of love.
Are we praying for these people? Do we even think of these people? Better yet, have we done anything for these people?
I can remember as a child, my father giving a dollar to a man who looked like a bum. I just knew that he would run right to the store to get some booze. I asked my dad "Why did you give him money when you know that he is going to buy booze." My dad replied "I can't tell him what to do with his life, but I can share with him a little of what I have, If he is hungry, or thirsty, he is hungry or thirsty. If he is sick with withdrawing from alcohol, and some more alcohol will take the immediate sickness away, take some pain away, if even for a short time, it is making him better, at lease a little."
I still didn't understand my Dad completely for many years, but finally I think I get it.
It isn't our role to see the faults in others, we are to see "the need" in others and do what we can to take some of that need away.
When you see a person struggling, What do you see? What is your first reaction? Is it "What can I do to help?"
As the years went on, I continued to see my Dad hand people money on the streets. By most American standards, we were a poor family growing up, but my Dad always found a buck for someone in need, and never did I see him turn his back on anyone.
Thanks Dad for still teaching me.....