Check it out.
(There’s loads more interesting stuff on the Something Beautiful podcast too for those of you with long journeys and an MP3 player!)
Here’s the low down in visual form…
Which kind of set me thinking again…
Christmas and consumption- can we really turn this around?
For us it will not be easy. Friendship and relationship is very important. As Christians we care called to prioritise both- and the more connections and relationships you have of any depth, then the more present-giving you will find yourself in the middle of.
We have tried various measures over the years to break the consumption-obligation cycles that this can place on both us and friends. These have included-
I have painted, hammered, written and made a million jars of pickle (the house has just recovered from the smell of the last lot!)
Michaela is really good with her hands, and makes cards and all sorts of other things. She usually tries to bring other ‘crafty’ friends together and they have a communal session around the table, which always seems great to me.
But this requires a lot of that precious commodity called TIME- and as Christmas approaches, we tend to be very short of this. Kids plays, church services, carol singing, friend and family visiting and (of course) shopping…
Agreeing not to give gifts
With some close friends we have come to arrangements not to give stuff- but then we often weaken, We say “just the kids”, and then end up giving ‘a token’, simply because we like each other…
Giving stuff to people who need it most!
A lot of charities now allow you to give presents to a third party on behalf of someone else. Check out Oxfam unwrapped– we use this at work rather than giving cards and presents.
The advent conspiracy folk suggest these things;
The other thing that we can do is to organise some time for ourselves and our community to focus on Jesus during Advent– before the Christmas business fills all the diary space.
Think about the business of WAITING. Of anticipating the coming king. Think about the giving of God, and the beautiful pregnancy of a season that will give birth to grace…and peace…and truth.