At the beginning of December we set out on a mission to make this a special season of giving in our community. We wanted to find simple, easy, non-expensive ways to give this Christmas. The ultimate goal was to let others know that they were in our thoughts and that we genuinely cared about them and our community. Our hope was that others who follow our story would join us. That we, as a community, would make giving the priority. Selflessly putting others, in some instances complete strangers, in front of our own wants and desires this Christmas. The response from our city, our community, and the country was phenomenal. Giving acts were completed by individuals, and families, across the nation. We often speak about creating an epidemic of giving. An epidemic that spreads from community to community sweeping across our country and the world. In December, we saw a glimpse of it. It was an unbelievable sight. It was exciting and inspiring.
The 25 Days of Giving was a success. This was a special season of giving. Obviously, I am not speaking for anyone other than us. I have no idea how most people felt about our small gifts, our random gestures, nor what, if any, impact any of it had. I am only speaking on the impact that the 25 Days of Giving had on our family and me personally. It was an enjoyable, life-changing event that we were blessed to have experienced. In giving, we always receive. I have said it a million times because I have seen it, felt it, lived it. This was no different. The greatest gifts we received this Christmas were not under a tree. They were gifts received by giving. We observed selfless acts by homeless men and women living on the street. We received a call from a complete stranger telling us how we have inspired her, changed her life, and improved her relationship with her sister. We saw the smiles on the faces of loved ones Christmas day. We heard and read stories from others about the joys of their giving experiences. We spent time together as a family. I could go on forever. The gifts were plentiful this Christmas thanks to the 25 Days of Giving.
As we enter into the new year we must all remember that there are no small gestures. Simple, yes. Small, no. Each gesture is filled with an unlimited potential that we cannot see. We will never know, or understand, the true impact it may have. There can be power in a cup of coffee, some coins for a parking meter, or a terrible rendition of your favorite holiday song. It is this unknown that is exciting. We can have an impact, make a difference in the lives of others, and change the world around us without even knowing it. We just need to open our eyes, open our hearts, and reach out a hand. I am not sure about you, but I am not big on making New Year’s resolutions. I am willing, however, to make a New Year’s commitment. I am committed to living a life for others in 2013. I will look for moments of positive impact each and every day. I hope you too will make the commitment. Many blessings to you for health and happiness in the new year.