Kim Harms

Life Reconstructed

Experiencing The Joy of Giving

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The first time I took my boys shopping for goodies to fill Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, I had to leave my cart in the store half-filled and not paid for.  One of my children – who shall remain nameless – threw a fit because I refused to buy anything for him. We went home and talked about why we give, and we were able to have a successful shopping trip a few days later.

Several years have passed since that first trip, and it is now our annual way of kicking off the Christmas season. The kids know we are going shopping for little kids around the world, and they dutifully pick out toys, toothbrushes and school supplies.

But this year one of my children seemed to have an epiphany. “I really like doing this. It’s a lot of fun,” he said as we strolled the aisles of Target. Granted, he was spending my money, not his own, but he was finding joy in choosing gifts for someone else. A definite step in the right direction. Once you find the joy that giving brings, it’s something you want to experience again.

I want to see that joy of giving develop in my kids as I look for more ways for them to give.

What do you do to teach your kids to think beyond themselves? Seriously, I’d love new ideas, so let me know.


Author: Kim Harms

I am a contributor at CT Women (previously known as Today's Christian Woman where I was a regular contributor as well). I blog monthly at and have freelanced for a variety of publications including Chicken Soup for the Soul, Guideposts, Thriving Family and Creation Illustrated. Cancer made an unwelcome visit in my breast in January 2016, and I am now working on a book about breast reconstruction after having gone through the insane process myself. My incredible husband of 18 years, Corey, is my biggest writing cheerleader and together we are having a ball raising our three growing boys; Carter 15, Owen 14 and Lewis 10.

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