I suppose I’m falsely under the impression that we Americans are without money, at the bottom of our bank accounts, and looking for coupons to clip because we need to save money. Well, a lot of the people I know are doing that. But we are in the land of plenty and we Americans paid out the cash (and credit) over the past few weeks.
- Black Friday sales this year were 11.4 billion. Up 7% from last year.
- $52.4 billion was spent during the Thanksgiving Weekend.
- Cyber Monday was the highest-grossing online shopping day in U.S. history with spending reaching $1.25 billion (up from last year by 22%).
- Online shopping for November hit $15 billion.
So apparently there’s plenty of good money floating around. I might be sounding wry and cynical right now, but I’ll confess we do not escape the lure of Christmas spending in our house either. I think we do a lot better than we used to, but there is more to be done. I don’t think there is anything wrong with a meaningful gift. But often we overdo it.
Over the next few days I want to give you some ideas about how you can spend some of your Christmas cash to make a difference in the world … instead of just getting something else to gather dust in your garage. I’ll start today.
Maggy and I plan to give each other a goat for Christmas. Well, we plan to give a goat in our names to someone who can really use it. If you will check out World Vision’s gift catalog you can give goats, ducks, chickens, oxen, and other life-giving animals to people in third world countries who can’t afford them. They will then be able to gain nutrition and ability to earn money because of your gift. WORLD VISION has been around a long time and they are a reliable charity. I think Maggy and I will feel very good about buying a goat for Christmas, and we won’t miss some other gift in its place.
I’m sure there are a million ways to give to others during the holiday season, but I’m going to suggest some that mean a lot to me. Don’t feel bad about buying gifts for one another … just remember the needy in your global village! Stay tuned!