Love the Give

The Best Day

Lately Ryan and I have been thinking a lot about generosity. What it means and looks like to live generously, to share our resources (large or small), to actively seek out ways to be generous with our time, energy, prayers, and finances. It has been a theme set on our hearts in a big way these past few months.

Last year we were on the other end of generosity. Friends and family gave so selflessly to us while we were going through treatment. We know first hand what it feels like to be in need of something and for someone to show up and ask for nothing in return. It’s truly the greatest gift and always left us speechless.

We volunteer each month at a home for young adults exiting foster care and on the verge of homelessness, and every month our time together rocks us to our core. Truthfully, we don’t do much. It’s more of a time commitment than anything else, but we spend our evenings eating dinner together and chatting about life, goals, dreams, etc… and each time, we walk out of their home thinking about how much they gave to us. How their lives are such a testament to God’s redemption story.

So this year Ryan and I were racking our brains for a way we could do a little more for the homeless community we care so much for, and we decided to reach out to!

The GIVE Bag was started by the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Foundation after being inspired by The Giving Plate and the Pay it Forward movements. They wanted to create something that could start in motion a mentality of random acts of kindness and gifting small things with a big heart. We worked with them this past Spring and knew they’d be a great fit!

After doing a little research and a few phone calls later I lined up a larger give at The Second Harvest Food Bank. Both Ryan and I have volunteered there in the past and knew it would be a great opportunity to fill a small but mighty need for their community.


At The Second Harvest Food Bank they have a program called “Recipe for Success” which is a culinary training program for those The Second Harvest Food Bank serves. These men and women either have a home insecurity or are actively living in homeless shelters but are looking to better their situation. This program helps them do just that! Once they’ve completed the program and graduated, they are ready to work in the food industry. It’s truly amazing what these men and women have and are in the middle of accomplishing.

We filled up 30 bags and delivered them to the students of the Recipe for Success program with every day essentials you and I take for granted, like deodorant, shampoo, hand lotion, socks, lip balm, etc. and dropped them off. We’ve spent weeks prepping and putting together these bags and I can not tell you just how good it has been for our hearts. We’ve been tracking our Amazon orders like crazy people, getting so excited when our bulk shipment of shampoo was out for delivery!

Our hope is that these bags are such a blessing to our brave and strong new friends at The Second Harvest Food Bank. Their smiles told us so, but thinking and praying for these men and women these past few weeks has in return blessed us more than we thought possible. That’s the thing about generosity…. it’s always unexpected and the impact always radiates.

If I can encourage you to do one thing this season, let this be it! Order a Give Bag (they’re completely free!!) and fill it up for someone in need. It doesn’t have to be a grand-over-the-top gesture. It could be for your neighbor across the street who is lonely and would love a new Christmas ornament, or a cup of coffee with a friend. Don’t over-think it! Just do it.

Because I know for us, the thing we will remember about Christmas 2019, will be this.


In partnership with #LoveTheGive



  1. Jane H.
    December 20, 2019 / 11:47 am


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