Giving is worth as much as receiving

By Gavin Lewis

My family probably enjoys summers just a little bit more than most families.

My wife and I work with schools, so we get somewhat of a break, and, of course, the children are out of school and are always ecstatic about sleeping a little longer and staying up a little later during the week.

The extra time we have at home gives us an opportunity to spend more time together than we normally would –  doing things like traveling and playing monopoly and UNO nightly.

While we are all happy for the break and time together, my kids know that summer means one thing – major house cleaning. It’s one of my favorite things to do, and one of their least favorite.

We take time to go through each room looking for items that they no longer use or play with, and clothing that no longer physically fits or fits their style for that particular season.

While they don’t enjoy cleaning, they do enjoy knowing that they will have a little more room in their closet for new clothes and shoes, and a little more space for the next toy of the year.

They also enjoy knowing that blessings are about to come to other families. That’s because we take all of the items we no longer want and bless those who may be less fortunate. Whether it’s a family that just lost everything in a fire, a family who may have fallen on hard times or a random charity we pick, my family knows that the items that now mean little to them are about to give joy to someone else. It’s just as much joy, and maybe even more, than when they first received the items.

This cleaning journey also gives us an opportunity to talk about all of the wonderful things God has done for us, and how blessed we truly are as a family. They hear me use the mantra, “Be a blessing, to receive a blessing” throughout the year. Summer is one of those times in which my children get to fully participate and feel the joy of doing for others.


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