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Most people seem to me to have a tendency to think about the needy at Christmas time.  That’s good.  Unfortunately, it also seems that many have a tendency to think about the needy only at Christmas time.  As Christians, our concern for those in need should be apparent every day of the year.   The biblical commands to care for the poor are numerous and clear and certainly not limited to once a year.coffee-beans-4

I don’t say any of that, of course, to discourage anyone from remembering the needy at Christmas.  Rather, I hope to encourage you to remember the needy all year long.  Since Christmas is quickly approaching, though, I want to point out a few simple and rather painless things you could do this holiday season to help those in need.

Buy Coffee

Freshly roasted coffee makes a nice, fairly inexpensive gift for the beloved coffee addicts in your life.  If you’d like to buy coffee and help the poor at the same time, you have a couple of options.

Gobena Coffee

The events surrounding the adoption of their daughter inspired the Lehmans, in their words, to…

start this ministry where 100% of the net profits are reinvested in the lives of orphan children throughout the world. Each time you purchase a bag of coffee, you are providing hope and life to children who do not have parents caring for them.  (Find out more here)

Bolaven Farms

Inspired in part by the ministry of John Piper, Bolaven Farms is a coffee grower with a heart for the poor.

What the poor want is not aid, but jobs – real jobs, not subsidized ones. This is the dignity and self-reliance we are equally created for. Embracing this revealed desire of the poor, Bolaven Farms is committed to labor with our Resident Farmers, to put an end to poverty, one family at a time.  (Website here)

Buy Homemade Earring Holders

Whose wife doesn’t have lots of earrings?

Blog team member Isaac Johnson‘s wife has a friend who is trying to help a refugee family from Iraq pay for much needed dental work by selling home made earring holders.

If you or anyone you know is interested in purchasing an earring holder for a suggested donation of $20 (plus shipping if needed), one hundred percent of the proceeds will fund the dental work needed by this family. (If you do know of others who might be interested in your area, it might save on shipping to send a couple together.) The earring holders are beautifully crafted, hand-made, and they make great Christmas gifts!  (Read more here)

If you’re not interested in purchasing coffee or earring holders (or even if you are) there are also a lot of other ways to help the needy.

Fill a shoebox for Operation Christmas Child (but you’ll have to hurry!)

Get involved with Prison Fellowship’s Angel Tree ministry.

Or do something else creative.  But please, do something.  And whatever you do, don’t stop when Christmas is over.

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