Saturday, November 29, 2008

Christmas Changes

Christmas will be different for us this year. With the economy the way it is and the abundance that God has blessed us with, we have decided to make a change.

I love the way God works in my marriage. Typically when He has something for us to do, He lays it on each of our hearts separately and then we come together and realize we are thinking on the same path. This time was no different. It started with me realizing the abundance in our lives. 

As I was asking the kids what they wanted for Christmas, none of them could really come up with something they needed or even really wanted. I started wondering what we could do without adding meaningless items to our lives. A couple of days later, Steve approached me with this new idea and it just clicked! Then, on a great blog I visit, I saw this video and I knew the idea is what God had for our family this year.



Sooo, we approached the kids with our idea tonight. I must admit I was a bit nervous. Would they be disappointed? Would they embrace the idea? How will they react? Here's the idea:

We have decided to take the money we would spend on their large gift for Christmas and give it to them this weekend. They each then have till Christmas to give it away. Any way they want. It can be all to one place or they can spread it out. They can give it to a charity or to a person they know is having a hard time. They can use it to start a business and then give the proceeds away. The options are limitless and are their own. It is up to them, alone, to give their gift to someone else. Then on Christmas morning, instead of opening the gift, we will each tell how we spent the money and what came of it. 

I am so excited about this!! And know that God is going to use it in a special way in the Bowyer family.

I am not sure how I expected the kids to react. But they seemed to embrace the idea. They were very honest about feeling a bit disappointed about not receiving a gift and it was a great opportunity to talk about sacrifice. But I could also see the wheels turning in their minds as it starts to take shape. I can not wait to see how God will use them and their gifts.

In case you are interested, here are some great places to give for Christmas this year:

Heifer International
Charity: Water
Compassion International

I will be posting after Christmas on what we all did!!! Happy Holidays!

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19 comments:

Rach@In His Hands said...

Simply wonderful. Your kid's acceptance of this idea says a lot about the way you are raising your family. What a wonderful way to "let their light shine"! I can't wait to hear what they end up doing!

Jules from "The Roost" said...

That is wonderful Sara, I can't wait to here what they did :)

Christine said...

This is incredible. Thank you for following God's lead and then sharing it with us. You are a blessing, Sara.

Smilingsal said...

Our church is involved with:

http://thegiftrevolution.com/live/index.php

Check it out.

LindaCCC said...

What a beautiful idea and what a way to teach your children. May I ask their ages? I can't wait to read what each o them chose to do.

sara said...

Linda, their ages are 19, 17 and 15. I am excited to see what they do too!

Sally, thanks for that website..that is very cool!

Sara@ Butterville said...

Sara, you INSPIRE me! I feel so blessed that we are friends through these blogs! E.v.E.R.Y. year, I go through the things where I get asked what I'd like, and I think new appliences! Well, that's a little ridiculous. Giving clean water, I can only imagine how smart and grateful I'd feel if I'd have thought up that one!
Great post, thank you...does it seem like I say that a lot to you? Why don't you write a book?
Inspirations from Sara B.
I'd buy it! oh wait we were talking about spending LESS, ok keep it coming for free on the blog, and I'll keep reading and taking notes!

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

I am all about digging wells. It's one of my favorite ways to give. The other is to give to the place that buys chickens and cows and goats for people.

shell said...

Oh I love it Sara and I just love your kids SO much and agree with someone above who said you have raised them well!!!!!! How awesome and I LOVE that you are giving them the chance to do what THEY want with the money!!!!

Beverlydru said...

Wow. I am inspired. This is an awesome new direction.

Michelle Burk said...

Sara, what an exciting idea. Leave it to you and Steve to do something so simply and have extrodinary results. Love you both!

Jamie @ Purposeful Pursuit said...

Love it...so inspiring! Can't wait to hear how it goes.

Wendi @ Every Day Miracles said...

Sara, that is the neatest thing I have read in a while! What an inspiring idea! I loved the video too! It will be so fun to read what your kids do with this idea!
Thank you for sharing!

Rachel said...

This is a great idea! I know your kids will be blessed by it!

Greg C said...

I think it is a great idea. We already bought gifts but the kids understand that they will be smaller this year. They are ok with that. I may try to work in something like you are doing. I also thought about adopting a family this year and giving them a Christmas.

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

I think that sounds awesome! Can't wait to hear what they choose :)

That's some great kiddos...

Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories said...

You and your family are just so amazing and inspiring. I am so looking forward to reading your follow-up post and find out which direction each of them went in. Love it!

Uncommon Blonde said...

What a wonderful idea! This will definitely be memorable for them. Looking forward to hearing about how it goes!

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

Wonderful! We LOVE Heifer International. My daughter's public school just did a huge fundraiser for them. And we live about 5 miles from Compassion. We're going to do something different this year too--along the lines of giving. Thankful to know others have paved the way and joined the "conspiracy".

Blessings,
Meredith

PS--You know I'm from AR, right?