By Alan Jones AO

There’s an old saying ‘Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting’.  I like to think it’s the very essence of Christmas.

Reverend Bill Crews and his team at The Exodus Foundation provide community for the tens of thousands of people who, often through no fault of their own, find themselves without a roof over their heads.

Indeed Mary and Joseph found themselves sleeping in a stable the night Jesus Christ was born – the very first Christmas.

These are the people most at need in any community and it’s comforting to know Rev. Bill and his team at The Exodus Foundation are there to lend a helping hand, a hand up not a hand out.

As many of us gather with friends and family, it’s important to remember those less fortunate than ourselves.  I’m reminded of the parable of The Widow’s Offering.

Jesus sat and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.

Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”

The essence of Christmas, giving without a thought of getting.