My message for this Christmas season . . .

Niki Schoggen | Contributor

Happy Holidays from all of us at Rizzo’s by Michael Patrick



My Thoughts
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“Giving doesn’t have to be of monetary value. Giving of your time, talents, encouragement, and general kindness to your fellow man. I have found that in the various stages of my life, rather I had plenty to spare or two nickles extra, when I gave out of my need to someone or to an organization, my family was always blessed beyond measure. You see, I take the focus off of me. ”

When you invest your time into people, it never returns void.  You could be the change, the example, the difference maker in their lives that they may not have seen if you hadn’t stepped out of your comfort zone and invested.  Challenge issued…Will you step out?

This Christmas, my heart breaks for the people of our city.  What if we were to give the city of Memphis, the youth of Memphis, the police officers and the politicians of Memphis a Christmas present?   Let’s give them ourselves.  Until love, patience, encouragement, and JOY are invested in our neighborhoods, our schools, our churches, our businesses nothing will change.  I ask you, what have you done lately? Are you listening to the cries of the community to simply react without thought? Or do you listen to respond?

Donnie Wheeler posted from Manna Christmas

Notice the little blonde headed girl in a hot pink coat singing and dancing.  She was so filled with joy.  I, being over the registration team and enforcer of rules, had to tell that sweet baby that her mom didn’t have a ticket so I couldn’t give her a present. I told her that they were getting a new warm blanket and lots of food to take home with them.  She smiled, even hugged me, and said thank you.  As she and her mom walked away, I looked at my team and we all had tears streaming down our faces.  You see, giving was down this year.  We didn’t have enough toys to give to all those who came without a ticket.  We had to limit it.

My daughter Alexis and I vowed right then, that this will not happen again.  We are buying toys for ages 0-12 every week and stock piling.  I have asked my registration team to do the same.  2 cups of coffee at a coffee shop will  provide presents for these children and how selfish am I that I cannot forgo a cup of over priced (but yummy) coffee?!

We are here to set the example.  Walk the talk.  Praying others will follow.  Words without action are pointless.

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My favorite chapter of Proverbs (God’s fortune cookie) is chapter 15.  I enjoy reading it in the various versions available.  I do this to gain the perspective of others.  Chapter 15 is filled with “one liners” if you will for our society today.  I encourage you to take a minute and read it in different versions so that you gain understanding and see if some of today’s headlines don’t just fly off the page to you.

“She smiled, even hugged me, and said thank you.  As she and her mom walked away, I looked at my team and we all had tears streaming down our faces.”

Niki Schoggen

Niki Schoggen

Director, Meat Me in Memphis Gala | Monogram Loves Kids Foundation

Birthed from the heart of Karl Schledwitz & Monogram Foods, MLKF raises funds for children’s charities in the communities for which Monogram Foods operates.

Open your hearts and open your minds to the loving truth and give.  Give of yourself, your time, and if you are so blessed, your finances.  Make a difference in someone’s life today.  Link arms with someone that is struggling with something you have been through to show them there IS life on the other side of this storm.  No one and nothing can take true joy from you.  That is on the inside of you.  Help someone find their joy this holiday season, but not only for a season, for a lifetime.

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