Saturday, December 5, 2009

One Teeny Tiny Way...

Well, we actually got all our shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child packed and to the church on time. It took me a bit to CRRRRRAAAAMMMM all the goodies in!! After that last post we ended up getting a few more items, plus the third box, so things had to be reconfigured. There were watercolor paints and inflatable balls, board books and Hot Wheels, mini tea sets and mirrors. It was pretty unbelievable how much stuff we fit into such a small space. Then I had to take care of all the little details. Like printing labels, gathering rubber bands to secure the boxes, and filling out the "All About Me" pages for the two non-writers. (They did the coloring, however.) This project is so much fun! Feels just as good/sweet/loving/nurturing to do this for three children somewhere far away we'll almost certainly never meet as to do it for our OWN kids. It really does. In fact, in some ways it feels better. (Not that that's WHY one should do it.)

In his book Living Beyond the Limit
, Franklin Graham writes, "In a world where life for many children is harsh and cruel, what do you think a child will do when he or she receives a box filled with toys and candy — a small present by American standards, but unbelievably generous by their own? Most often, a child will unwrap the shoe box, take out just one piece of candy or one small gift and hand the box back. When we tell them, "No, the whole thing is yours," their little eyes peer back into the box in disbelief — some cry, others giggle, most just hug the box close to their grateful hearts."


That's reason enough, wouldn't you say?

Go to their website and check out exactly what this organization is all about. And by the way, Samaritan's Purse (the mother organization of Operation Christmas Child) includes in each box a small booklet with the Gospel message in the child's native language.

If you didn't get your shoe box(es) done and dropped off in time for the last day of National Collection Week, you can actually send completed shoe boxes YEAR ROUND!!! Yes! No more excuses! Send them to:
Samaritan's Purse
Operation Christmas Child
801 Bamboo Road
Boone, NC 28607

Now. I'm going to step on my political soap box for just a sec. Many will watch the images in this video (one of my absolute favorite songs, by the way)...



or images of our OWN countrymen in poverty and dire straits and say that our government should step in and do this or that to meet their needs and "fix" things for them. In fact, I used to be one of those people! (Ah, those crazy high school and college years!) I actually thought government should get in there and TAKE CARE OF PEOPLE, but I now know that:

1) Life isn't fair. It never WILL be. That's thanks to Brother Adam and Sister Eve. Right?
2) Some of the people in those situations are there as a result of consequences of their own actions. (Not saying we should leave them in their desolate state...I'm just pointing it out.)
3) Putting the government in charge of solving problems of this magnitude is like putting an 8-year old in charge of planning...I don't know...the Inaugural Parade! There's just no way it's going to get done WELL.
4) ALL the government has ever done is "dole out." It can't and won't show Christ's love.
5) The government DOESN'T EVEN HAVE THE MONEY to do it!!!! Though it claims to. (And will just tax and tax and tax EVERY BODY to get the money, yet will still be in debt. It TAKES from one and gives to another. That's called stealing, by the way.)
6) These are opportunities for believers to LOVE people and thus WIN their souls for the Lord (meeting the greatest need they will ever have).
7) It's not the government's business to love on people. The government DOESN'T love people. It just enables them (to stay where they are).
8) It's the Church's business to love on people. The Church should be GIVING it's time, it's money, it's resources, it's gifts and talents, it's abundance, it's love. God commands His followers (not the government) to "feed the poor," etc. In fact, God never commands (or even suggests!) the State should address social ills caused by sin (speaking of "The Fall" here, not specific sins). This responsibility rests solely with the Church.
9) The government really ought to be focusing on keeping us a free country and preserving our liberties (or what's left of them).
10) The government should REMEMBER that we were not founded on Socialist principles!

That said...we, the Church,

better.
get.
busy.

Makes me think of this Casting Crowns lyric:

But if we are the Body
Why aren't His arms reaching?
Why aren't His hands healing?
Why aren't His words teaching?
And if we are the Body
Why aren't His feet going?
Why is His love not showing them there is a way?

Jesus paid much too high a price
For us to pick and choose who should come
And we are the Body of Christ.


So. Shoe boxes??? This is just one teeny tiny way (among many) we can show Christ's love to others. Just help meet some BASIC needs and then share the good news of Jesus. Send some money to do some good some where, but make sure it's an organization that is all about spreading the Gospel. We don't NEED even HALF of what we have. So just QUIT! Quit getting more and more for yourself and give to someone else! So many people have LITERALLY nothing. Not even any hope. Please pray that they receive hope--the hope of Jesus Christ--and then let's join in and help MAKE it happen!!!!

"Go, send, or disobey." -- John Piper

(I've been having trouble with wacky font changes. Here's hoping they publish correctly...I don't pretend to understand the mysteries of Blogger.)

2 comments:

  1. I like your soapbox very much. I'll stand with you

    ReplyDelete
  2. We may differ a little politically (I just wrote a long paragraph because I apparently have a lot of opinions here, yikes, but I deleted it because I didn't want to hijack your blog with all of my "liberal" :) talk.), but we have the same desire at the core of it. Anyway, what I really wanted to say is...although our tree already has presents underneath, there is a good chance it won't have any AT ALL next year. Our hearts have really been stirred gradually over the years...and we need to (like you said) just QUIT.

    ReplyDelete

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