On the second Sunday of Advent, Alan Cavan, a volunteer at Habitat ReStore, shares a reflection on how we can help those less fortunate than ourselves.
6th December is St. Nicholas Day, when Nicholas/Santa Clause left presents for children.
What can we give to help the plight of others less fortunate than ourselves?
Advent, the four weeks before Christmas, is a time to get ready. We prepare to celebrate Jesus’ birth. Prophets announced the coming of a saviour. “For a child has been born to us, a Son given to us..” Isaiah 9:6
During Advent we become one with those who waited in darkness for the revealing of God’s light and dared to hope that God’s salvation could come in the birth of a child. We celebrate God’s gift of Jesus Christ and give thanks.
“There is a great variety of humans, in terms of language, skin tones etc. but we are still a single species living on a small vulnerable planet with the most serious risks to our future shared among us. The sooner we learn to embrace that commonality, the better the prospects for us all.” Bill Bryson,former Vice-Chancellor of Durham University.
What can we do?
At Habitat, we just don't build a house; we build a home, security dignity, and hope for the future. It gives folk more time to, say, plant crops for food and sell the surplus.
Close your eyes. Imagine a small shack with rusting corrugated tin for a roof; a light cloth curtain is the door. Inside the floor is dirt with no covering. An open fire is used for cooking. There is no sanitation or running water. Imagine.
How can I help? Who should I help? Who is my neighbour?
Anybody on the planet in need, of whose need I become aware, is my neighbour.
What does it mean to love my neighbour?
To do what I can when I become aware of need; those who are hungry, are without shelter or experience desperate loneliness. Those who don’t know where they’re going and have lost hope.
Prayer: Lord, help me spot situations where I can do something practical to show love to someone else. Amen
Alan Cavan is one of fifty volunteers who help out every week at Habitat ReStore. Learn how you can get involved here.