Christmas isn’t my holiday of choice, though I’m coming to appreciate the advent season as a whole. I get frustrated with the commercialism and materialism and become a grinch. To combat that, I found Advent Conspiracy a few years ago and I’m sold. It’s a global movement that pushes back the stress and consumption and instead, focuses on worshipping fully, spending less, giving more, and loving all. Because really, Jesus did these things to the fullest extent by coming to the earth. He glorified God with everything he said and did. He resisted the ways of the world and stood up for the injustices at the cost of his time, energy, and reputation rather than an abundance of funds. He gave his life as a sacrifice for all. He loved with abandon, fully, generously, unconditionally.
I know spending less and giving more may seem contradictory, but hear me out. All of these things can be accomplished in a single purchase, if you so choose to pursue that route. Spending your money wisely in a conscious manner is what it boils down to. Donate to a ministry in someone’s name. or Purchase a fair-trade item that stands for justice (something God cares an awful lot about), treats others with dignity and respect, may cost a little more, but is a more meaningful gift in the end.
If you’re like me, December probably flew by and the week before Christmas snuck up on you like a fox in July. Do you have some last minute Christmas gifts you still need to buy? How do you feel about doing good well? Great, me too. There are options out there that allow you to accomplish both. We can spend less by spending more. That doesn’t seem to make sense, but it will. The items you purchase will be quality and last longer than something cranked out in a sweatshop. They’ll be made by real people with decent working conditions. You’ll be supporting families and causes rather than CEOs’ already too big wallets or corrupt or oppressive businesses.
Fair trade or organic goods cost a little more. I get it. But, the effects are lasting. to individuals, economies, and the environment. It’s worth spending a bit more for a quality product that I know was produced in a healthy environment. one that contributes to the lives of other individuals somewhere in the world. one that helps rather than harms.
Here are a few resources and shops you can check out for future purchases that contribute to the good of society.