I am so excited about participating in Operation Christmas Child! It is absolutely one of my favorite activities to do with children. Have you seen this promotional video from OCC? The children in my Kidslife class were glue to the screen as they watched.
Tomorrow we will pack our shoeboxes. Although we will be packing gifts to send to remote locations, there are many gifts for each child and adult who participates here.
The Gift of Sharing
It is easy for children to get caught up in what they want for Christmas. Giving to others, as we remember God’s greatest gift to us, is a wonderful way to refocus on the true meaning of Christmas. Every year that I have helped children pack Operation Christmas Child boxes, I have seen them filled with the excitement of sharing with others.
… remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ” Acts 20:35 (NIV)
The Gift of Using Talents
God has given each of us an abundance of gifts, including talents. Operation Christmas Child offers the opportunity for kids to share their talents with other children. Perhaps, they can add a picture or complete a craft to include in the box. Children are drawn to other children. Such a sharing of talents connects child-to-child across the globe.
The Gift of Seeing God’s Provisions
Each Christmas season, I am amazed at the stories of the God-connections that the boxes make. (One of my favorites is the story of the twelve toothbrushes. Evidently, there was a misunderstanding. The sender thought she was supposed to send a number of the same item for distribution, and twelve toothbrushes ended up in one box. God had a plan all along. The box landed in the arms of a child with 12 family members.) It is exciting to share the accounts of God working through the shoeboxes with the children as we pack them. What a lovely gift to all of us (and a reminder from God) that He is always aware of our needs.
Of course, there are many opportunities for children to give at Christmas. What are some of your favorites? What blessings have you seen for the child who gives?