Angel Tree, Grumbling Givers

>> Monday, December 12, 2011

"The best way to spread Christmas Cheer, is singing loud for all to hear."
Buddy the Elf (Elf movie 2003)

I am upset.  I may even be mad.
I don't know why I do this to myself, but I was reading a question/comment that someone had posted onto a website that I frequent. The question that was posed to the reader was about needy kids asking for expensive presents.  The writer had asked the reader how they felt about needy kids on Angel Trees asking for gifts like Xbox games and Ipods.  The writer felt that if the kids had an Xbox, then obviously their parents could afford to get them a gift themselves.  I read the first 10 comments before deciding I needed to fire one off of my own.

"I can't believe how many people are chastising the kids for asking for a "want" at Christmas. How would you feel, being poor, to only get socks or shoes for Christmas? How would you feel having to go back to school after Winter Break and listen to everyone talk about the cool things they got and you have nothing to talk about? Who are we to judge what these kids have? Maybe they got an xbox as a hand me down from a friend that upgraded, so what is so wrong with asking for a game? I try my hardest to teach my kids that Christmas is not about getting tons of toys and gadgets, but who are we kidding? That is what it has become, unfortunately. Me, I don't mind buying the xbox game for the kid that ask for it, even though I don't have one, because it is not for me to question how he got it. We should give out of a desire to bring joy to a child who otherwise wouldn't get much. People - have a heart, these are kids who the majority of the time probably have to be little adults at home to help out. And for those of you who said your churches leave "those" kinds of tags on the tree - shame on you."

Ok, I know - I didn't need to be so harsh, but I was mad.  I look at the Angel Tree at my local coffee shop everyday and feel like crying.  I cry because I know that these kids go without for most of the year.  I get upset because even if these kids have cool toys, gadgets, a big TV, many of these kids only have one part time parent.  I say "part time parent" not to say single parents don't do a good job of raising their kids (I'm a single mother of two), but because it is extremely difficult to be a parent the way most of us would want to be when you are just physically and mentally exhausted from a long day at work and just want to rest for 5 minutes before you have to get the kids fed, homework done and the kids bathed.  Before you know it, it's time for bed and you've barely spoken two words to your kids.  I don't grumble about being a single parent but I know that what I just wrote describes a typical day for me.  I am luckier than many, though.  I have a job that pays well and an ex-husband that loves his kids and understands he needs to support them - but even with that, it's hard to be a great parent because really all our kids normally want is our attention which can be so hard to give at the end of the day.
Maybe I was a bit harsh and let my anger get the best of me, but I can't help it when I think my kids could be one of those kids.  I just want us all to remember what it was like to be a kids at Christmas.  Though Christmas is about Jesus' birth, I have always felt that it was about His "gift" to us as well.  It''s a gift that we can never repay or duplicate. God does not command us to give when we don't want to or have the means (2Corinthians 9:7), so we should not question those who feel they have a need.  Whether you have good memories or bad ones, at the end of the day, we should want to bring joy to a kid who otherwise might not have a great Christmas.  Great list of bible scripture referencing giving.


Crystal Mendez December 13, 2011 at 3:04 AM  

I totally agree with you and just want to share my sweet husand was one of thoughs kids who never got much for Christmas he came from a very broken home as did I, but his father was in prison pretty much all his life and his mother tried hard but was on her own He aften tells me about his favorite Christmas the one he will never forget, the one when Angel tree sent him and his 2 brothers gifts! he said it blessed his heart so much he cried like a baby and finally he could go back to school and have something to talk about. my husband had a tough childhood but grow up to be a wonderful God fearing man father Pastor and friend
People Should never take it out on these childern there going throgh enough already God bless and thanks for sharing

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