Saturday, January 4, 2014

90% Off and 100% Sure

Well, I think the after-Christmas finds for Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes here in Erie, PA are pretty much over.  And pretty pathetic.

Last year I got several thousands cups and bowls at WalMart for about six cents each at the after-holiday sales.  This year?  Nada.  Not one.

Today our one lone Target store finally went to 90% off on Christmas items.  They had some LED flashlights I'd been watching.  A few days ago they had one side of an aisle filled with them.  At 90% off they would have been 30 cents each (with no batteries) but today as I rushed into the Christmas section at Target there were NONE there.

I heaped a bunch of 10-cents-each Christmas stockings in my cart, thinking I could make tote bags out of them as suggested on the Clip With Purpose website.  As I prayed and thought about it I reconsidered and put them all back. I really don't think I would have followed through with the project.

I found only a few items and was in line at the check-out when I saw an acquaintance in front of me had two of these cool NFL tote bags containing fleece blankets in her cart.  I asked her if there were more and she told me where to find them.

At last, Lord--a bargain worth finding!  I got 17 of these sets for $1.69 each and will divide up the tote bag from the blanket to bless two children.  The blanket will need a box that is slightly bigger than a GO box but they will work.

As I wrote in my last post, I really have very little for next year's shoe boxes at this point.  That is really unusual.

Oh, I forgot to mention that I had trouble starting my car this morning.  And when I got to the check-out at Target I discovered my main credit card was missing.  I thought it might have fallen into my cart and searched all my bags for it to no avail.

The neat this about this is that I saw the Holy Spirit at work in my life because I stayed calm.  I reminded myself that car issues and credit card losses are "first world problems" that are really just annoyances.  To see this in my life was a big blessing.

Eventually I realized the last time I used my card was at a restaurant on New Year's Eve and I was able to go there and pick it up.  Praise God!

My husband went to several stores to try to get the car battery checked and decided the lines were too long--so the verdict's still out on whether it starts tomorrow.  It wouldn't start on Thursday morning at all and I had to get a ride to work with my neighbor.  Deep breath.  First world problem.

For years I've watched God provide for these shoe boxes in different ways.  One avenue of provision would end and I'd see God provide something new.

So, the 90% off sales may be disappointing this year but of this I am 100% sure--God has a plan here and He is in control.

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