So here's the thing, right about now if you look around your neighborhoods and churches you will begin to start seeing signs up from things like salvation army, operation Christmas child, and so on and so forth. But, I want to encourage you to give. It is the Christmas season and I know that in  today's economy there is not a lot of money to be spent on anyone else, let alone yourself. But, I hope that you can dig deep inside yourself and begin to see the joy that will spring from your heart and soul when you begin to care for those less fortunate than you.

At Southeastern a group of students have set up a Christmas tree inside of the lunchroom, and all around the tree are little paper ornaments with a child's name, their grade in school, and what toy they would like for Christmas.. This toy drive is not to the kids out in Africa or India, but it is for the kids who live less than five minutes down the street from our campus.. I don't know why, but for some reason whenever it has come to me giving to kids in other countries through things like Operation Christmas Child, I never seemed to really see the children as people...it is sad for me to even think about now, but I just have always heard that people in other countries needed help and therefore I would give them a little something to help them out. It has always been hard for me to grasp my mind around the pain and suffering that goes around all over the world, but what I find more saddening is the lack of desire that we have to give to those in pain who are only right down the street from us.

Many of us believe that in order to impact the world we must become missionaries, and we must go out into the world and reach others. But, we do not take that mindset and apply it to going out into our very own neighboring communities. This is where, if you are a Christian, that you are to believe that God has placed you.

Where you are - that is your missions field, that is the place in which you are too reach out and give to others also! It is important to give to those in other countries too, do not get me wrong! But, let us not forget that pain that is residing within our very own country this holiday season.

I have a little paper ornament for a third grader named Juan who wants a transformer...I have been praying for Juan everyday since I have gotten that little ornament...my heart aches for Juan because I want Juan to be loved this Christmas and I want him to see that love through a simple transformer toy. I only have about $10 to my name as of today. I sometimes feel like I am the one who needs someone to give him something for Christmas...But the words of Christ ring true in my heart, and that is that it is better to give than to receive.

So this holiday season do not be afraid to give! Give to others! Love others! Be excited to lay down your life for someone else in order that you may see their lives benefited in return. Be humbled this Christmas season and if you are having trouble with this, then do not fret because you are merely human and just like the rest of us you must pray for guidance and for the softening of your heart in order to do the will of God.

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    My name's Ben Carter. I'm 18 years old and I'm in a long distance relationship. I don't believe life should be lived without relationships, so this page is here to explain what I mean by that.


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