Shift the focus from receiving to giving. If you are reading this, you have both a computer and internet service and therefore I suspect you’re not living on bread and water. My family is far from rich, but we have all that we need and SO much more that we normally take for granted. Go look around your kids’ bedrooms or playroom, and if you seriously think they are in need of more toys, please proceed with the Christmas madness as usual. If, however, you are shocked and a little ashamed of how much *STUFF* your children have, this is a good time to do something for others who are less fortunate. Children have a natural inclination to make people happy, so facilitate the opportunity for them to experience the joy of giving. Samaritan’s Purse and World Vision have wonderful Christmas catalogs with gifts like livestock, Bibles, medical care and vocational training for impoverished people around the world. Let your kids pick how they want to help and encourage them to think about why it’s important. Or do something community-based. There are many local charities operating in full force around the holidays – find one that directs all donations to needy families in your area. Or better still, just look around! If you can’t find a million ways to share your blessings with those who are struggling, then you’re blind in one eye and can’t see out the other!
One note of warning: you must embrace this with zeal. Don’t ever try to sell your kids on something that you are only half-heartedly doing. It isn’t fair and it ain’t gonna work.