Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

[friday]

December 20, 2013

A new kind of gift giving

Every holiday season I find myself wandering aimlessly among the masses at giant malls and tiny boutiques searching for the perfect Christmas gifts.

I look at hundreds of gizmos and gadgets and clothes and shoes and scarves and handbags and crafts.

Will my sports fanatic brother like this [insert random team name here] sweatshirt? Or did I get this one for him last year?

I call my mother for answers. She’s no help. As it turns out, she, too, is stressing out about what to get him.

We’ve fallen into this same pattern for years now.

We have the best of intentions. There’s nothing we want more than to make each other feel happy and special on Christmas day.

But our family is blessed beyond belief. None of us need anything. In fact, there’s not much we want either because when we want something, we go out and buy it.

This can make gift giving… well, a little bit challenging. By Christmas day, we’re all frustrated and worried we’ll let each other down with our less-than-perfect gifts.

That frustration is creeping in again this year. And it has me thinking. Maybe it’s time for a new family tradition.

Maybe we can take some of our money and buy presents for a family in need. Or better yet, maybe we can commit to giving back in February or March when the so-called season of giving has ended.

In fact, how much better would the world be if even one of our Christmas gifts to loved ones this year was to pay it forward in the coming year?

People always seem a little more generous in November and December as the holidays approach, but there are families who need our help every day of the year.

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