Sometimes we seem to have far too many decisions to make and it can be confusing, unsettling. We long for black and white choices.
My mum, in her late 80s, ponders how she will give money to charities at Christmas time. But what decisions does she make among many good causes?
My niece and her husband are trying to make wise decisions about study and work – balancing the need for an income to provide for their young family, and their desire to prepare for church ministry.
And of course at Christmas, there are numerous opportunities to upset the relatives if we make the wrong decisions.
But actually, we are blessed to have choices.
For many hundreds of years, ordinary women and men didn’t have time for anything other than supporting their families, couldn’t have freedom to travel, could not choose to be single or who to marry, and did not have spare money to spend or give away.
I have been thinking of Joseph’s choice to love and protect Mary when he found out that she was pregnant. He could have cast her aside or he could have quietly broken off his commitment (as he was tempted to do) but he chose to stand by Mary and protected his family even though that meant exile.
God trusted Joseph to make the generous, kind and Godly decision. He asks us to make such decisions too, so that we counter the world’s selfishness with consistent generosity.
Philanthropist Deanne Weir puts it this way, “Pick something that interests you, take the time to get informed. Then just give what’s reasonable to you.”
So this Christmas, enjoy pondering how to give in a good way, just like my mum.
The writer of Hebrews reminds us,
“Do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” Hebrews 13:16
Have a wonderful Christmas doing good and sharing generously.