Today I got to serve with Operation Christmas Child in Charlotte, NC in the processing center. I have always wanted to do this after packing boxes in years past in my classroom and with my grandson.
Working in the processing center is like working in Santa’s workshop. I was a pre-inspector. My job was to open the shoeboxes and check for money envelopes and take them out. I also had to make sure each shoebox had a label with boy/girl and the aged checked. I went by myself, but worked with a church group and a family. I was practicing my extrovertedness. I was brave and proud of myself.
The shoeboxes we processed today were going into countries that don’t allow missionaries to come in. We were given specific instructions on what could and could not go into these boxes. We could not put any religious, Christmas, Angels or anything with the words: Jesus or God. These boxes go through customs who search through them for these items and throw them away. But the cool thing is that these boxes have been prayed over time and again. They have been blessed and covered by the blood of Jesus! God is in those boxes without being seen. Praise God!
Countries where you find NO Churches, now have Churches sprouting up because of shoeboxes getting to children who share with their families the gift of Love! God enters through the hearts of those who give and pack the shoeboxes. God enters through those who pray and process the shoeboxes. God enters the heart of the child who receives the shoeboxes because of the love others show through serving.
I saw so much love that went into the boxes today through items we take for granted and think are cheap and useless. I saw people who serve through giving of their time by volunteering and teaching young people to serve. I learned how much stuff can go into a shoebox and how important it is to treat other people as the human beings God created them to be.
Being a missionary doesn’t mean you have to leave your home or country. You could pack a shoebox and it will go to a child who has never received a gift before or may not know what love from a stranger is or even who God is. You can be that One. The one who serves others through love, the love of Jesus!
Join me in packing a shoe box or two or more. Go to http://www.samaritanspurse.org and find out what to pack, how to pack and where to drop off. Also, find out if there are any openings to volunteer at the processing center where you live. You will go and serve, but you will leave blessed and never the same.