Thursday, December 16, 2010

In which I wish I could do more ...

I mean, really ... I'll admit that I'm a lazy person.
(Seriously, my house is NEVER spic and span. My desk is CONSTANTLY in a state of disorder. I procrastinate. I have wonderful intentions that I don't get around to ... like the Christmas cookies that I keep MEANING to make.... *sigh*)

And this might help explain why I'm always so amazed by the wonderful things out there to help people:

  • Kiva loans - kiva.org 
  • Heifer International
  • World Vision - Both of these places allow people to donate funds to purchase livestock to help others in need to be self-sufficient (and, in turn, to pass along some of their new livestock's offspring to others).
  • FreeRice.com - Answer trivia (Vocabulary, foreign language, grammar, science, math, geography, etc) and, for each correct answer, you're awarded a donation of 10 grains of rice to countries in need.
  • HungerSite.com - click for a donation of food to be made. (There're also other sites linked. The Breast Cancer site donates money toward mammograms to women who wouldn't be able to afford them otherwise. Children's Health helps get immunizations and medicine to children. Another helps buy books for children. One helps buy rainforest land so it will be protected. And one helps pay for food for animals in shelters.)
  • Letssaythanks.com - You can send a free postcard to servicemen/women for free via Xerox. You choose the design and a message. You only give them your name and hometown.
And, yes, those are kinda small things ... but they serve some (NEEDED) good.
(I'm not going to lie, I tear up something fierce when reading the World Vision catalog. For many people out there, these animals (and the work, wool/fur, eggs, milk, manure, etc) are a ticket to being able to thrive, to be self-sufficient; to be able to afford a home, clothes, food, and schooling. ... This astounds me. I'm so incredibly spoiled. And, really, would it kill me to donate, what, $50 to help another family to get out of poverty?)

And then ... well. There are the people out there that make a huge difference.
  • Bill and Melinda Gates' foundation helps millions of people. (Say what you will about Mr. Gates' business dealings ... still, there's good things being done with some of that money. Which makes me feel better.)
  • Mother Theresa ... need I say more? She was an amazing powerhouse of a woman.
    She embodied selfless service.
  • Dr. Hawa Abdi - She's a Somalian doctor who's stood up against the militants who tried to run her out of her own clinic (for being a woman). She is raising money to restore her clinic back to running condition to take care of the thousands of refugees who have flocked to her clinic for protection.
    When her life was threatened, she didn't care. She's hardcore. And I'm in awe of her courage and strength.
  • And this amazing, amazing man: Mr. Narayanan Krishnan

    (Thanks to my friend, Dianne, for originally sharing this on facebook.)
But, yes ... I think, especially at this season, it's always a VERY GOOD THING to be reminded of the reason for this holiday. We were given the most wonderful, most needed, most ... BESTEST gift ever.

There's no possible way for us to ever give anything of the same value in return. 
But couldn't we make more of an effort (myself included!) to show our appreciation and gratitude in our daily lives by serving those around us?

This year, I find myself listening, over and over, to a certain song ...


There's magic in the air this evening
Magic in the air
The world is at her best, you know
When people love and care
The promise of excitement
Is one the night will keep
After all, there's only one more sleep 'til Christmas

The world has got a smile today
The world has got a glow
There's no such thing as strangers when
A stranger says hello
And everyone is family
We're having so much fun
After all, there's only one more sleep 'til Christmas

'Tis the season to be jolly and joyous
With a burst of pleasure, we feel it arrive
It's the season when the saints can employ us
To spread the news about peace and to keep love alive

(spoken):

Merry Christmas! So long!

There's something in the wind today
That's good for everyone
Yes, faith is in our hearts today
We're shining like the sun
And everyone can feel it
The feeling's running deep
After all, there's only one more sleep 'til Christmas
After all, there's only one more sleep 'til Christmas day 

(Copyright isn't mine. It belongs to The Jim Henson Company and Disney.)
(I hope they don't mind my quoting it. Because these lyrics are wonderful and they make me very, very happy. Paul Williams [who wrote the song]  ... I have no words. You're just too cool.)

But ... yeah ... if anything will motivate me, it should definitely be these great examples. ^_^

2 comments:

THE YOUNG-INS said...

I think you are one of the most cheerful people I know...when you give a smile, you give a lot. Don't be so down on yourself...you give more then you think...and if we all had a gazillion dollars I am sure we wouldn't miss a few million to donate to charities. :)

Allanna said...

Thanks, Dawn. You know flattery gets you everywhere. ^_^

And I love your perspective. Thanks. ^_^

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