Thursday, April 17, 2014
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Out & About • Patrick Lacombe | Operation Christmas Child

Imagine a child waking every morning with no clean water to drink, no shoes to wear, or your town in shambles because of war. This happens to millions of children across the globe daily. But, thanks to organizations like Samaritan’s Purse, some of these children will awake Christmas morning to find a shoebox filled with toys, hard candy, or simple toiletries waiting for them. 
Over one million shoeboxes have been distributed by Operation Christmas Child since its inception in 1993. Children in over 130 countries have learned of God’s love from this program. Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, heads the program. Shoeboxes filled with goodies are collected from individual churches, then sent to a collection point where the boxes are shipped to Samaritan’s Purse for distribution.


To participate in this worthwhile program, you must first decide if you want your gift sent to a boy or girl. Then choose an age category of 2-4, 5-9, or 10-14. They suggest items such as school supplies, hygiene items, clothing, toys, flashlights and extra batteries just to name a few. Do not include used or damaged items, toy guns or knives, or perishables such as chocolate or any medications. You may also enclose a note to the child and a photo of yourself or your family. If you include your name and address, the child may write back. You can also follow your box and find out where it went by going to www.samaritanspurse.org and donating $7.00 to help with delivery costs.
You can also help disciple a child by donating an additional $6.00. Your gift can help give a child the opportunity to enroll in “The Greatest journey” program that teaches children about salvation through Jesus Christ. It is a twelve lesson bible program and upon completion, the child receives a certificate and their very own copy of the new testament. Over 650,000 children around the world have accepted Christianity in response to their lessons.
It is amazing what a simple shoebox loaded with items you and I usually take for granted can do to help a child and put a smile on their faces. One woman from our church describes it as “my mission from God” and was rewarded with a letter from a little girl in Zambia who had received her shoebox. “Prayer is the best gift of all” she told me. She went on to say that the little girl’s reply was truly a gift from God because there was no street address, zipcode or State. It was simply addressed with her name and Belton, USA.
God bless y’all and have a great week.