Tuesday, December 1, 2015

On Giving

It seems that the world has harnessed social media to create a “day of giving”. Admittedly, this is better than the “Gimme” days, like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. I like the idea of giving rather than getting. However, a “special” day for this purpose concerns me.

Perhaps I am old fashioned, but I think that giving is meant to be a personal thing. It should always be done from the heart and with no ulterior motive. Giving should be fueled by an inner flame and fanned by an inner voice. That inner voice may be conscience, a guardian angel, God, or perhaps echoes of significant childhood elders. Call it whatever you feel comfortable with, but listen to it.

Too often, especially at certain times of year, we are guilted to “give” and inundated by organizations wanting us to donate money. However, there are so many. How does one choose who is “worthy”? How much of your donation actually goes to the ones who need that money? It is probably a good idea to look into the organization and understand how they operate before donating. Better yet, find someone that you can actually see, and can believe in what they are doing. This may be someone local, such as a food bank or animal rescue. There are many places in your own community that need help.

It is also a fact that many people in today's economic climate are not able to donate money. Yet, there is a guilt that is often felt when one cannot donate money as freely as others can. Somehow the message becomes that if you care, you donate money. Or, donating money makes you a better person than those who don't. None of this is true.

When finding an organization you can become familiar with, there are often “things” that are needed. Animal rescues sometimes need blankets, towels, or crates. Many appreciate pet food or toys. Shelters for people can usually use similar items, of course. These items vary, so it is always good to contact the organization to assess their needs.

The number one thing that we all have and can give in some personalized way is time. Maybe there is a neighbor who is alone and needs help with something. Perhaps there is a child who needs tutoring or an elderly neighbor who can't shovel snow. Maybe you know a single mom who needs a babysitter occasionally. There may be a stray cat or dog hanging around your home or work place who needs a meal.

There are always numerous silent opportunities to give. You could close a trash can as you pass by, to keep snow out. You could alert someone of a possible hazard to prevent an accident. You could take hot cocoa to a bell-ringer. If you think about it, you can always find ways to give even a moment of your time and to make someone's day better. 

Whether you give items, your physical self as a volunteer, or even the timeless gift of prayer, you are truly giving of yourself. This should never be limited to a day. There is the danger of donating on just one day and then excusing oneself for the other 364 days. I would rather think of people giving or doing for others 365 days. That is what we should all strive for if we are to ever become a caring and united world.

Maybe I am a rebel, but I don't like to follow trends or a social media that tells me what I should be doing. I choose to follow my heart and listen to that inner voice. I want to do good deeds under the radar and year-round, rather than in the spotlight on a mandated day.

I don't want credit for what I do, either. In fact, I would rather no one even know about it other than those that have to know, and God. I take to heart what the Bible says, "So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.” -Matthew 6:2

I believe that giving from my heart throughout the year is the right thing to do. Knowing that I can do little things to help make the world a better place is its own reward. So, give whatever and whenever you feel led to do so, but always give from the heart.  

Linked to:
The Prompt:
"It's Giving Tuesday! Will you participate?"

Monday, November 30, 2015

Sight Seeing

Nothing gets past George.

He loves to watch the birds and critters

from his favourite place in the window seat,

until he eventually gets sleepy.

Then the show is over.

Yep; not too much gets past George.

Sunday, November 29, 2015


In her two decades on earth, Mattie had lived in so many places. The way she was raised, she never knew if she was coming or going.

Some people sought fame or fortune, but Mattie only sought a place to call "home". On her life's journey of many moves, it was a very pleasant surprise when love actually found her. 

Now, as Mattie crossed the entrance into yet another house, she knew it was love that made it a home.

Linked to:
Quote Prompt:
"A house is a home when it shelters
the body and comforts the soul."
~Phillip Moffitt

* This is a story that was originally written for Five Sentence Fiction. As I organized my stories in my new computer, I realized how well this story fits this prompt. Soon I will have new writing to share. Peace. ~McGuffy Ann Morris

Saturday, November 28, 2015


The holidays were coming. Streets and parking lots were filling with cars as people rushed about, laden with bags and packages.

From opening until closing time each day, Marty stood ringing his old bell in front of the big department store. He wore the same old thin coat, mismatched gloves with holes in the fingertips, and huge unmistakable smile. It was hard to gauge how old he was; he somehow seemed timeless.

Marty had done this for so many holiday seasons that people remembered him. He remembered them, too. Marty liked people. People would come by and wave or call to him. He never failed to greet each person, calling them “Friend” and wishing them a happy holiday. Even when some people ignored him, pretending they didn’t see him, Marty would smile. He knew they were busy; they had things on their mind.

Sometimes people would ask him how he could do it day after day, no matter the weather. He always responded the same. He liked being useful, collecting donations for needy people. He could take the cold for the few weeks of the season because he knew he was helping others. He knew some people had less than he did. He had clothes and food to eat at the shelter. He had enough. He also had time that he could share. It was his gift to others, he said.

As the weeks went by, Marty continued to ring his bell as he paced back and forth on the icy pavement. However, he looked more tired and cold each day. His age was catching up with him; it was becoming obvious. His regular donators, his “friends” as he called them, noticed and showed concern.

One evening, just before Christmas, a van pulled up to where Marty stood. Grinning and waving, he realized it was a group of his “friends”. The people got out of the van, carrying things as they approached him. One person put a hat on him, as another helped him into a warm coat. Someone wrapped a scarf around his neck, as someone else handed him warm gloves.

As Marty stood stunned, they brought a folding chair out of the van. Setting it up near Marty’s donation bucket, they told him to sit, as they eased him into the chair. Finally, someone handed him a cup of hot coffee. As tears rolled down Marty’s face, they told him for all that he gave to others, it was their turn to give to him.

Linked to:

*In the spirit of the season, I will be sharing some of my stories and poems from holidays past. I hope that you will enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them. Peace.
                                                                                                                             ~McGuffy Ann Morris

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Giving Thanks

Blessings come in all shapes and sizes.
May we give thanks for each & every one.

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all!