Tis the season of the beeping horns, heating bills rising and busting budgets. If your Holiday shopping goes anything like mine than the numbers can go from a couple hundred to “I don’t want to know how much it’s costing me” very quickly. The pressures to provide for our loved ones can feel unbearable during this season. While I often think that I must give my children, spouse, co-workers and friends exactly what they want I was surprised when a I heard a mom speaking about a recent study that revealed children who always get what they want live for the next thing and don’t learn to enjoy or appreciate what they have. After learning about this study the mom decided not to buy her ‘tween’ son what he wanted, instead she bought him a bike. The family began weekly bike rides and the parents learned about child’s school, friends and even his struggles in faith. He complained at first, he wanted the game system, but learned to enjoy & care for his bike. Sometimes we place unnecessary pressure on ourselves to ‘provide’. Many times we just need to refocus on what we provide. As I reflect on this time of year I think of my own faith which teaches me to provide characteristics like love, patience, faithfulness, discipline and forgiveness. Often, it requires less effort to pick a gift off the shelf, but the material gifts that we give break, go out of style and are often unappreciated by the New Year. In this season we must refocus and re-evaluate the types of gifts we give to others by the way of our example throughout the year. So be encouraged that the most valuable gifts we give won’t cost you a dime, but they are priceless. Happy Holidays!