The best part of faith-based gift-giving during the holidays is the variety of forms it can take. Maybe it’s a traditional religious gift. Or a snappy piece of teen clothing with a Christian message.
When in doubt, the faith-based shopper can always fall back on the timeless holiday gift of ... a milk cow. You could also pay for a child’s education. Choose well this holiday year and perhaps there will be enough grace to go around for the giver, too. Michael Gordon
Charlotte Family Housing’s ‘Holiday Jubilee Store’
Unlike many Christmas “stores,” this one doesn’t give anything away. It charges needy families as much as 30 cents on the dollar for holiday gifts, part of an overall plan of developing independent lives. The money raised recycles through family housing’s micro-loan program, where families can get interest-free loans during emergencies.
This year’s Jubilee Store is Dec. 7-8 at Myers Park United Methodist Church, 1501 Queens Road. Financial donations: Charlotte Family Housing, 300 Hawthorne Lane, Charlotte, NC 28204.
For a list of the needed gift items: www.charlottefamilyhousing.org/jubileestore.
Details: firstname.lastname@example.org or 704-488-5227.
Hooded T-shirt from NOTW
“NOTW” (Not of This World) puts out a line of young people’s fashions with a Christian message. One of them is this hooded, long-sleeved tee with the line’s logo. Browse the C28 Christian Store at www.c28.com.
$19.99 at http://bit.ly/110a6jY.
Wall Hamsa at Temple Beth-El
A “hamsa” is a hand-shaped amulet that in Jewish and Middle Eastern tradition has offered a defense against the “evil eye.” It also makes a beautiful piece of wall art. The gift shop at Temple Beth El in Charlotte has a number of hamsas. But this one is our fave, a creation of enamel, beads and glass that looks like it came straight from the pocket of Joseph’s coat of many colors.
$105 at http://bit.ly/YmZFs3.
‘Deep Blue Bible’ for kids 7-12
Cokesbury.com offers an entertaining way to get kids to read Scripture.
It’s called the “Deep Blue Bible,” and young readers follow three children through the stories of the Bible and receive exposure to their lifelong messages.
$17 at Cokesbury.com: http://bit.ly/UpMXG0.
Inspiration for Kwanzaa
For the holiday of Kwanzaa, the Black Art Depot offers a series of iconic posters that combine motivational themes with photographs of key moments from the struggle for civil rights.
$20, at http://bit.ly/TskRZH.
A gift of an animal or a future
At Heifer International, you can send a cow to a needy family for $500, or buy a share in the animal for a tenth that much. Or your tax-deductible gift can provide clean water, a flock of ducks or hives of honeybees. For $275 you can help pay for a girl’s education.
How about a share of a camel? Details below.
$85, at http://bit.ly/vIALYF.
“Sometime He Whispers, Sometimes He Roars,” Marilyn Chadwick’s treatise on prayer. Chadwick is the wife of David Chadwick, the longtime pastor of Forest Hill Church in Charlotte, and a leader in several Forest Hill initiatives in her own right.
Steven Furtick, the young pastor of Elevation Church in Charlotte, also has a book out. “Greater” contains Furtick’s thoughts on how God can help bring a greatness to life that “God has seen in you all along.”
$10 or so, at Amazon.com.