Well we have just got through one of those kind of crazy weekends that happens this time of year. It was all good stuff, but there was a lot of it. An association Christmas party on Friday night, two family Christmas parties on Saturday, church on Sunday, our church Christmas dinner on Sunday night and then Kim and I were invited to our sister church in Oakville to share about our plans for Hamilton. So this weekend was jam packed. In the midst of it all, however, we were able to carve out some special opportunities for our advent experiment.
Friday began with our children going online to look for children who are in need of sponsorship through Compassion International. They had done a project last year about sponsoring children and after all their research, they chose Compassion as the organization with whom to work (to read more about it check out Kim's blog: www.zoo-ology.blogspot.com). Well, they found Silvan from Kenya who had been waiting for a sponsor for almost 500 days. We chose to sponsor a child in place of getting small gifts for each of the families in our extended clans as we have done in some years past. We were able to share a picture of Silvan with note explaining the sponsorship to each family as we let them know that we have sponsored Silvan in their honour this Christmas. The amazing thing was to see our kids make the decision to use what money we would ordinarily spend on small gifts to sponsor Silvan instead and then decide to step up and cover the sponsorship for the rest of the year themselves, with their own resources.
Saturday was the busy day, but before we went to the parties and were able to deliver the cards with Silvan's picture, the boys and I were off to the grocery store to volunteer for the Salvation Army's Food Drive. Our good friend Mike made the arrangements for us and so we were able to go and spend the morning collecting food and cash donations. My favourite part was when an older lady approached us to make a cash donation just because my son Liam, who was manning the kettle, "was such a cute little girl." Liam - I don't care what your grandpa Bob says, I still like your hair long and I think he is just jealous!
Of course Sunday morning was church, and what a great time to really focus on the meaning of this season.
So that was the weekend, crazy and busy, and yet a meaningful time altogether.