Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Aftermath

The past weeks have been so busy with packing parties and speaking engagements and relay center visits that I've been just piling all the Operation Christmas Child paraphernalia in the spare room.

Today I spent some hours trying to sort and pare down all the papers and items. I took apart old church kits (all but last year's) and saved a pile of OCC posters, bumper stickers, etc.  I saved the outer folders to offer to churches that might want to use the pictures for bulletin boards or displays.

I filed media articles and meeting agendas and I separated supplies--balloons and pens and special report magazines and brochures and videos.

Then I followed some rabbit trails down memory lane as I perused old files from nearly a decade ago.  I wasn't a year-round Operation Christmas Child volunteer then, but I still spent a fair amount of time accumulating items to pack a few hundred boxes every year as a church project leader.  I actually thought I was busy with OCC then--ha!

All around the world there are Operation Christmas Child volunteers who have invested millions of hours in this project his year.  Even today thousands of volunteers were working at 7 processing centers around the country, inspecting boxes and preparing them for shipping.

And as my duties here in the US begin to slow for a few weeks, the National Leadership Teams and volunteers in the receiving countries are gearing up for the height of their busy season as they prepare to train volunteers and distribute shoeboxes.

Today I ordered 3600 filler items for next year's boxes even as I sorted through last year's chaos.

 I guess we're never really in the aftermath.

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