Tuesday, December 9


"Don't tell me you will do it...JUST DO IT!" Those words probably ring in my kids' ears today, because my husband and I were constantly telling them that good intentions didn't count, actions did. They could tell us over and over again how they were going to clean their rooms, improve their grades or use better manners, but we were never impressed until we saw actual changes in their behavior that brought about changes in their grades, cleanliness or manners.

I recalled that phrase..."Don't tell me you will do it...JUST DO IT!" as I walked out of the Galleria shopping center tonight. I was convicted as I read Stacy's posting yesterday. It encouraged everyone to give their 'presence', not 'presents' this year. I told myself yesterday how I agreed with that...and then I went shopping.

Wow, is it easy to get caught up in the hype and glitter of THINGS. I suddenly felt I needed to purchase items I never even considered before stepping into some of the stores. My 'presence' paled in comparison to some of the 'presents' I could buy with my Visa card.

I came home and pulled out some journals of years gone by. I had a habit of writing down what I was thankful for everyday between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I tried to extend the list daily, never duplicating anything. I made a point of writing down at least one if not more things or people I was thankful for before I would make my Christmas lists. That exercise trained me over the years to focus on what I had, not what I needed to buy. It helped me focus on WHY I was buying something for someone and it helped me develop a giving spirit. My 'presence' was actually worth something to others if I had a thankful spirit within me. I stopped that discipline a few years ago, thinking I knew what I was thankful for and just knowing that would carry me through. Wrong.

I am not going to tell you that I am going to start this exercise of writing out what I am thankful for between now and Christmas. I am not going to just say I will be more mindful of giving my 'presence' to others this Christmas. I am just going to DO IT!

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