Quick Thought: A Christmas Story Of Giving

Pictured are Brayden, Landen, Eleni, and Addi delivering cookies.  One of several jobs they have been doing to make enough money to provide drinking water for an entire village.

By Kyle Quick

I want to share an amazing story about a family’s four children Brayden, Landen, Eleni, and Addi have done and how they have reminded me that Christmas is a time when we should reflect and be grateful for all our blessings.

Before I explain how Christmas will be slightly different this year for me, I must tell you about these four extraordinary kids; who by the way are just 8, 7, 5, and 3-years-old, and share the interview I had with them.

Each year their parents give them each $50 to buy something and give to another family through a non-profit organization, Samaritans Purse. (Click here to read our initial story.)

Their mom Cassie said, “We get a catalog that the kids look through and pick something out to buy, which is then given to a family in need.”

This year while flipping through the pages they came across an item.  Landen described it as a “big box” that would provide fresh water to an entire village.  While all four agreed to pool their money together, giving them a total of $200, only to realize the item they wanted to buy (a well) cost $10,000.

Friday afternoon I had the pleasure of speaking with these four awesome kids about how they came up with this idea and what their plain was to make $10,000 before Christmas.

One job they were asked to do was decorate someone's Christmas tree.

I asked 8-year-old Brayden what he thought after realizing how much money they would have to come up with.

Brayden said, “I thought we at least had to try and because it is the right thing to do.”

“We all starting coming up with ideas on how to make enough money.  I thought of doing jobs and accepting donations”, Brayden added.

Landen said, “We also have been collecting aluminum cans.”

“We have made baked goods for people then during the day my mom and Addie delivered them”, Eleni said.

Landen talked about one job they did.  “We pick up sticks and pinecones that they wanted to use for wedding decorations and we also decorated a Christmas tree for someone.”

I asked them how they would feel if they don’t reach $10,000. (At the time of our interview on Friday they had raised $2,300)

Brayden said, “If we get to $3,000 we can at least provide water for six families and we would still be happy because at least we got to help six families.”

Picking up sticks and pinecones.

Saturday morning they received a $1,000 donation from someone to bring their estimated total raised to $3,300 with more baked goods to make and a few other jobs.

I asked them if they felt special because of what they were doing.

Brayden (the oldest) immediately responded, “No because it is just the right thing to do.”

I think everyone can learn something by that statement alone, in fact our world would be a better place if more people thought the same way 8-year-old Brayden does.

Because of their actions and having the opportunity of listening to them tell me how this mission of theirs began, caused me to view the holiday season differently than I had in the past.

Eight years ago in August of 2006 my only brother, Ty, was killed in a car accident and ever since then I’ve never looked forward to Christmas like I use to because my focus had always been on what I no longer had.

I use my brother as an example because there are others who I love and have found myself wishing I could spend Christmas with them.

Instead Brayden, Landen, Eleni, and Addi made me realize two things:  Someone does not have to physically be with you in order to spend Christmas together and secondly to be grateful for those who you are spending Christmas with.

Just as we all should be grateful for what we have and not ponder wishing for something we don't.

Think about the families who will be getting water for Christmas this year and how grateful they will be and even though Brayden, Landen, Eleni, and Addi will most likely not reach their initial goal they are still thankful to have at least raised enough money and still help some families.

Remember miracles do come true and who knows maybe this story will reach enough people and at the same time be reminded of the true meaning behind Christmas.