Change Is Only Change When You Actually Change

By November 19, 2008 culture, faith No Comments

Post Subtitle: What?!! You mean I can’t keep doing what I’ve always done and expect my life to be different?

Call it what you will—transformation, conversion, renewal—it still only occurs when something unorthodox takes the place of the conventional.

Change can be so difficult though. Especially when my unorthodox seeps out on someone else’s conventional. That can be sticky.

One area of change that intersects tradition and family and expectations is with Christmas gift giving. [gulp.]

Quite slowly we have made changes to our routine. Fewer obligatory gifts. Creative presents. More time instead of more money.

All this is good. But it has been haphazard.

So I want more—more purposeful sacrificing and involvement so that after Christmas I will remember the gifts that I gave because they were so meaningful to the recipient—and to me as well. I want to give as Jesus gives: life, heart, and soul.

Although I have only heard about Advent Conspiracy’s Christmas gift overhaul a few times now, I fully appreciate what I see in this video clip. It calls for a countercultural approach to Christmas gift giving. It embodies all I wish could be true of myself. Check it out . . .

Not only does AC stress the importance of investing time and soul into personal relationships, it also challenges us to reach beyond our culture and care about people who are truly in need. I love AC’s tag line:

[Worship Fully]

[Spend Less]

[Give More]

[Love All]

And with the focus on providing clean water . . . what can I say? It makes me weepy. This is where my heart is. The idea of giving $10 billion to solve the water issue excites me beyond words. A simple reduction in giving to ourselves things that we really don’t need could give the needy what they can’t get on their own . . . wow.

[AC states that we spend $45 billion on gifts each year. Giving away $10 billion of that leaves us with $35 billion to spend. Today’s U.S. population tally is 305,692,690. Split evenly among our own population, that’s still $114 in gifts for each person. It’s amazing how much can be done with our excess.]

Here’s to giving against the grain to celebrate things that last (and things that change).

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