The world is full of turmoil and terror; watch the news for five minutes or read today’s headlines, and it’s easy to see why people are scared.  On November 12, a pair of suicide bombings struck Beirut, killing 43 and injuring 239 others. The Paris attacks killed 129 people and injured 352 more on November 13, prompting raids and arrests in Europe and airstrikes in Syria. There’s an ongoing refugee crisis because of the conflict happening in Syria.

Many Americans are saddened and scared about what is happening overseas. In the wake of these events, it’s much easier to see just how silly it was to make a big deal about Starbucks’ red cups, about how department stores are already decorating for Christmas, or about Black Friday doorbusters and deals. It all seems a bit trivial.

Although it’s not even December, an article in Huff Post argues that it’s okay to start celebrating Christmas. If it makes you feel joyful and brings your family together, what is the harm in that? Our world needs more happiness, peace, and love.

Immerse yourself and your family in the true meaning of Christmas. Here are a few ways to do this:

  • Donate. Help your family go through all of the closets; one night, take your family to drop off the donations so that they can see the good they’re doing for their community.
  • Spend extra time with your family. Plan a game night. Plan a night to drink hot cocoa and put the tree up. Plan a day to watch all of your favorite Christmas movies.
  • Give to those in need.
  • Volunteer your time and resources to an organization.
  • Feed a hungry family. If you have enough room, invite the family over to share in your Christmas dinner. Otherwise, take them shopping and get to know them. Let the family know that you care about them and are there to help.
  • Smile at strangers.
  • Provide toys and clothing for Christmas morning for children and families who are less fortunate. You might be able to ask around your community to see if there is a family in need; you could ask others if they’d like to help as well.
  • Visit the elderly and the sick; perhaps you have family or church members who are shut-ins or residents in a nursing home. Go spend some time with them, whether it be for coffee, for a card game, or to read to them.

It won’t take much time or effort to do a few of these things during the holiday season. The world needs more kindness and love; this list is a good place to start.

If you’d like to set up a time to meet up with Reka, you can contact her by phone at 402-881-8125, by email at, or via Twitter or Facebook.

photo credit: Merry Christmas via photopin (license)