Tuesday, November 10, 2015

all because of a little red cup

photo credit: starbucks

a red cup. this week in our country, we have invested hours of time and energy in arguments about cups. precious minutes, passions and energy have been poured into a meaningless argument. for all the media and social media attention, i personally do not know one person in any of my circles who is actually offended by the simple red cup. i do know of many...many people who have filled up their facebook feeds with passionate arguments regarding the frivolity of it all...and yet they are still posting. there is only one very clear winner in all of this publicity...starbucks. whether intentional or not, (and i think this bit of marketing genius is incredibly intentional), starbucks has gotten free publicity from thousands upon thousands of us this week. as i have sat and read update after update about this topic, it dawned on me. what if while we are sipping our lattes or drinks of choice in our simple red cups, we invested our energies into something that is actually worthwhile? what if we ignored the cup debate, regardless of what side we stand on, and all stood together to do some collective good? can you even imagine if all of this passion and energy were focused elsewhere? imagine the impact we could make.

as we sit reading our facebook feed this week, let's take a moment and ponder some amazing ways we can all invest in something good.

ways to invest your energy for good

operation christmas child: the collection dates for operation christmas child are happening this month. there are countless videos out there of children joyfully opening their boxes each year. if you need some inspiration to do a little shopping and spread some cheer to children in need around the world, watch this.

to find a drop off location for your operation christmas child box, check this link: http://www.samaritanspurse.org/what-we-do/operation-christmas-child/

national adoption day: november hosts "national adoption day." i am extremely passionate about adoptive families and people who are investing in these sweet children in need of a home. if you have considered adoption, take some time to investigate how you can be a part. if adoption is not for you, there are many "go fund me" accounts for parents working to raise the funds to adopt. the costs are extensive and many parents cannot do it without help. if you know someone in this process, consider investing in their journey. if you don't know of anyone who is moving in that direction, search for a "go fund me" account and give an anonymous donation. imagine if we all gave a little bit to a family in this process. it's staggering to think of the impact we could make on children right here in the united states.

local food pantries: the holiday months are huge months for local food pantries. they are collecting holiday meal items to distribute to families in need everywhere. find your local food pantry and buy double of some of the items you make for your holiday meals. donate them and let someone else enjoy the pleasures of a delicious holiday meal.

adopt families for christmas: regardless of whether or not you believe in christmas, no one can deny that there are families out there who want to celebrate the holiday but are unable to do so because of financial hardships. kindness has no religious affiliation. adopt a family and help to give them the christmas they dream of. join with some neighbors and work together to meet the needs of a larger group. 

bring gifts to a retirement home: one of my sweet neighbors organizes gift bags each december to take to a local retirement home to bless some of the residents there. oh my, the impact these simple bags make to an often forgotten demographic. there is such an opportunity for tremendous joy from these simple acts. get some friends together and make something special for people who are often overlooked.

bring someone a meal: heard your neighbor is sick or has a sick child? bring them a meal. someone you know recently had a baby? bring them a meal. someone had a medical procedure? bring them a meal. someone going through a difficult time? bring them a meal. someone had a rough day? bring them a meal. the simple act of making a meal for someone else can bring tremendous comfort. you have the chance to alter someone's day in one simple act. what if we all did this on a regular basis? 

there are countless other opportunities for good. there are random acts of kindness, secret gifts, anonymous donations, meaningful cards, so many things. if you do something for others this week, let's all post those moments on facebook. wouldn't you love to see your wall fill up with those stories of goodness? let's all decide to do something...let's step away from the posts about a little red cup and let's take a step in a different direction....with our without our starbucks in hand. 

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