Many Christmases ago, there was a family at church with a mom, a dad, and two precious little girls. The dad lost his job. Shortly after that, the mom was diagnosed with cancer and had to have surgery. Everyone at church was so moved by the family's plight, that they wanted to help this nice family.
Well, not exactly.
What they wanted to do was buy Christmas gifts for the little girls. And they did. Dolls and strollers and games and winter coats and bikes and dresses and video games filled the foyer of the church. Whee! Those little girls had more toys than a toy store! Gifts were piled higher than the girls were tall.
And the parents still couldn't pay their water bill.
What might have been a better gift? Cash. Groceries. Anonymously paying the family's utility bill. Did you know that anyone can walk into the utility company with a name and/or address and say "I want to pay this person's bill"? You don't have to be the homeowner. They'll take your money.
It's fun to buy toys for other people's children. Paying someone else's water bill isn't "fun." Sometimes, though, meeting basic needs is a better gift.
You weren't giving for the recognition anyway, were you? Were you?
Whose basic needs will you quietly meet today?