Walden’s Words: What are you giving?

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Editor’s Note: UMR Columnist Ken Walden submitted this article for publication earlier in the month of December, however due to technical difficulties on our part we missed getting this up at the appropriate time. We apologize for the delay and hope that you will check out www.giveanhour.org

Christmas Military Stockings

Christmas is a time for giving.  It is a time when billions of people around the globe celebrate God’s gracious act of giving Jesus Christ to the world.  Many people will host parties during the month of December.  Many employers will set aside time for Christmas parties throughout the month of December.  I have attended my fair share of civilian and military holiday parties in the work place during the month of December.  There are some similarities between civilian and military Christmas parties in the work space, such as sharing food and gifts along with the usual decorations.  However, one major difference is the topic of pre-deployments, deployments, and/ or post-deployments discussed during Christmas parties hosted by military personnel.  Many military chaplains will inevitably receive prayer requests from military personnel at a Christmas party regarding pre-deployments, deployments, and post-deployments.  Our military personnel are giving.  What are you giving to our military personnel?

The military gives A LOT.  The organization “Give An Hour” is one opportunity for everyone to give to the military.  Give an Hour is a nonprofit company founded in 2005 by Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, a psychologist.  Dr. Van Dahlen was named to the 2012 TIME Magazine’s 100 of the most influential people in the world.

Give an Hour helps military personnel and their family. The organization offers treatment for anxiety, depression, substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injuries, sexual health and intimacy concerns, and loss and grieving.  I invite you to explore their website at www.giveanhour.org.

As Christians, we are grateful to receive, but we understand our responsibility to give.  In your giving during this Christmas season, I encourage you to give to our military with a special emphasis to the organization Give An Hour.  God Bless You, God Bless the United States of America, and Have a Merry Christmas!

Ken Walden, UMR Columnist

Ken Walden

Ken Walden is an Air Force Chaplain Reservist and United Methodist Clergyperson. He is the author of Challenges Faced by Iraq War Reservists and Their Families.

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