Monday, 31 October 2011
Christmas presents: to give or not to give...
So.. I just had an interesting, errrr, 'debate' with my husband. To be fair this is not a new debate, it has reared its head several times in the last few years - usually at my insistance, I just can't seem to help myself... As soon as the subject of Christmas comes around we discuss whether it would be better to give the gift money to charity or a needy cause, rather than buying tat for our nearest and dearest.
Most of the people we buy Christmas pres for are financially blessed. They really don't 'need' anything tangible (if they did I would feel better about this whole debate!), or anything that we could buy. Kids that we buy for, have ooodles of presents, on top of the already overflowing toy boxes. It seems to me totally wasteful and wrong to be buying presents for these people when we could be really and truly blessing a family that is in need, or providing food for a starving family, or sleeping bags for the homeless. The truly in need.
My husband totally disagrees with me and so far we have not managed to come to a compromise. we have done things like buying gifts from charity shops (marginally cheaper, but lower class of tat...) or for own own kids asking people to combine to get a larger gift that we couldn't afford. This is all well and good, but doesn't solve the wider argument. My husband believes Christmas is the perfect time to be showing Gods love and by blessing those around us with a gift, (tat ot not). I understand where he is coming from but I feel that our nearest and dearest are far more blessed by coming to spend time with us as a family, sharing lunch, dinner, Christmas day etc, and equally we are all blessed by that too.
What really gets me is the needless waste of money Christmas is. Our parents are not easy to buy for. they have all they need and are usually unforthcoming about present wishes (if there are any). The huge number of kids on our lists are all very blessed and do not need any more toys! other random adults tend to get random books or other tat, as we have no idea what to get them.
I would much rather bless those truly in need but am I being too 'bah humbug' about this? are there better ways to bless people at Christmas, or is it just about giving, regardless of the gift?