Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Christmas is Coming!

But the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary will be here first!!! People.... Saturday....this Saturday.

I love my church and meetings and stuff, but when I heard that our congregation meeting was cancelled this week, I almost jumped out of my seat with joy. We will surely finish Season 7 was my first and unholy thought. {I regret nothing.} EDIT: Just got an email prompting me to buy tickets for the showing on Monday. Done and done; like a true fangirl, I got up early the morning tickets went on sale.

But to stick with the topic suggested from the title, Christmas is fast approaching. It seems especially fast this year, and while I know that part of it is that I'm getting old {depending on who you ask, of course}, I think a big part of the seemingly rapid pace towards Christmas is the fact that I'm not counting down the days to going home before the holiday. You guys, this is the first time in 3 years that I don't have to get on an airplane before I can be home for Christmas. If the angels weren't already singing, I would tell them to start!

The challenging aspect is that Christmas shopping has yet to happen. I take that back. I've bought one gift. Yikes.

After reading Jen Hatmaker's book 7, I've been thinking about Christmas in a different light. I mean, we all know that Christmas is not about gifts or stuff, but about God's story of redemption unfolding on earth. Yet...we still buy each other gifts. I think reading 7 messed with me more than I admitted to myself, because I can't think of Christmas in terms of stuff anymore.

It's hard, because I don't want to be a Scrooge at Christmas. But I don't want to just be a consumer {purchaser} of stuff. If I'm going to buy something, I want it to be meaningful, and not just in the "how did you know this was what I wanted!?" way.

So what I'm considering for gifts this year is buying from organizations who are doing something for the least among us, organizations that {the majority} are non-profit and that need donations or purchases from people whose basic needs are met. Um, that would be me. So here are a few that I would like to present to you.

Jen writes about Open Arms, an organization in Austin that employs refugees at a living wage.

Davi writes about Love-Water.org that provides clean water to countries that suffer diseased water.

Love146 works to end child trafficking; Not4Sale also fights human trafficking and slavery.

Save the Storks offers free ultrasounds to women planning an abortion.

I'm sure there are hundreds of other organizations that are also accomplishing great things for those in need; these are just a few that are either recommended by trustworthy people and/or work for causes that are on my heart. If you know of other organizations that are employing people so they can be free {like Amazima - store here} or if the organization is working for a cause {like Bound4Life - store here}, please let me know.

And because she's amazing, Jen Rossum shared this guest post regarding budgeting and planning for Christmas shopping. Please ignore the fact that I ignored the third step about not starting in November. Ahem. At least you've got several weeks to go. {Fangirl comment: But there are only FOUR DAYS until Doctor Who!}

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