I get Christian Woman Today devotionals on line. Yesterday it had a great idea in it and we going to use this:
"Jen decided to give fruit away. Oh, not the apples and Christmas oranges that you see in the store. No, she told me she was asking God for opportunities to give away the "fruit of the Spirit."The "fruit of the Spirit" is comprised of nine qualities that the Bible says will show up in our lives as we daily ask the Holy Spirit to fill us. This fruit shows a watching world we are different because we follow Jesus.Here is the list of fruit of the Spirit: "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, self control, gentleness, goodness and faith" (Galatians 5:22).Each day, until Christmas, choose one fruit off the list and ask God to deposit this gift in your heart in extra measure. Then ask Him to provide an opportunity to give that fruit away in a specific act that day. It is both a rewarding and a challenging experience.When we focus on allowing the Holy Spirit to overflow in our lives He may use the opportunity to highlight how very much we need Him. This fruit cannot be mustered up in our own strength with enough to give away. No, it is His work in our lives."
We have also drawn names within our immediate family. Instead of spending so much on all the kids each person is to buy an inexpensive gift for the name they drew. They are supposed to think about it and try to come up with something they think would want or need. The money we normally spend we are giving to Living Water International. It builds wells and provides clean water for people in Africa. You can also find some great information on The Advent Conspiracy.
In our stockings this year there may be a few small things but each person is supposed to put a note in all the other stockings saying something they appreciate about them.
Making Christmas meaningful in this materialistic society is tough. It can be done!