Archives For World Vision

This year we are going to do Christmas differently around the Atkinson home. We are just days away from Thanksgiving! – after which we will take down the Christmas ornaments and begin decorating our home for the holidays. We always decorate with Christmas music playing. I’ll also start playing Christmas music at church during the prelude/walk-in time. I’m glad it’s that time of year!

As a family, we are going to participate in this season of giving differently this year. Here are 3 things that I’m trying to use as teachable moments with my children:

  1. Send Christmas cards (made by our kids) to our child that we sponsor through World Vision and shop through their Christmas catalog. Maybe give some ducks… or a goat?!! Who knows?
  2. Shop in the IJM Gift of Freedom Holiday Catlalog. I don’t know exactly what we’re going to give this year, but we’re going to pick one of their great options. 
  3. New this year: we are going to participate in the brilliant campaign: Advent Conspiracy. Watch this video – dream with us. What could it look like if we change our shopping/giving/normal Christmas mentality and gave the gift of clean water? Do you honestly remember what you got or gave for Christmas last year? Check this video out:

I hope you know my heart. My intent is to share what’s going on in my life and my family – to encourage, challenge and stretch you – and hope that you and your family will look at Christmas with new eyes this year. So… what are YOU doing for Christmas?

EXTRA:

If you watched 24 last night then maybe your heart was stirred (like mine) by the issues raised. To get involved and do something about it go HERE.

EXTRA, EXTRA:

Some of you have, but a lot of you have not been following the string of comments on the “Don’t Go to Seminary” blog post. I encourage you to go back and read through all them. It’s pretty exciting to see how that struck a nerve with so many. You might even see a comment that shocks you.

I recently came across another powerful movie that I’m going to go see here in Dallas. You can watch the trailer HERE. The movie is called “Trade”. I encourage you to go and see it with some friends, classmates, co-workers, people in your small group, etc.. Let it be a catalyst for discussion. I’m trying to do that here in DFW. If you’re near here and want to go with me, just give me a shout.

Here is something from the movie’s website:

The practice of slavery in the US is something most people think ended with the 13th Amendment in 1865, but in recent years it has returned in an even more virulent form. Fueled by the collapse of the Soviet Union and other eastern European countries, new technologies like the internet, and sieve-like borders, the traffic in human beings has become an epidemic of colossal dimensions. The State Department estimates that as many as 800,000 people are trafficked over international frontiers each year, largely for sexual exploitation. Eighty percent are female and over fifty percent are minors. Many people in this country push this atrocity out of their minds, believing that it only occurs in faraway countries like Thailand, Cambodia, the Ukraine and Bosnia. The truth is that the United States has become a large-scale importer of sex slaves. Free the Slaves, America’s largest anti-slavery organization estimates that at least 10,000 people a year are smuggled or duped into this country by sex traffickers.

EXTRA:

One organization that I forgot to mention the other day is World Vision. My wife and I have been supporters of World Vision for 14 years. I encourage you to look into their ministry as well.