Wednesday, September 9, 2015
Yes, these Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes are about sharing the love of Jesus with children around the world. But they're also about changing the lives of people on "this side of the box."
This will be our seventh packing party, and for each of the past six packing parties, we've prayed for God to work in our own community. Each year we've done a Jericho March--walking and praying around the building seven times. We've prayed specifically for God to bring people from the community into this packing party so they would somehow come closer to Him. We've never really seen visible results from those prayers.
This past Sunday, though, I was invited to speak at a fairly new church plant in our community--a church that hasn't yet participated in Operation Christmas Child. That morning I asked God to raise up a project leader in that church who would be excited and want to lead the charge.
Before the service began a young woman came in with her husband and two children. I watched as she spoke animatedly with the pastor and then he brought her over to introduce her to me. She told me she and her children had come to each of our past six packing parties--starting when they were only four and five years old. They all loved being there and packing boxes. She'd already asked her pastor if she could lead the project in their church and was bubbling with ideas.
We sat together in the pew and after my presentation she leaned over to me with tears in her eyes, and said, "Now I really understand this."
I wasn't sure what she meant until we spoke after the service. She explained that she'd only begun attending church a few months before. Her faced glowed as she continued, "I just recently came to know Jesus and got baptized and just now when I watched the video I finally understood what Operation Christmas Child is all about."
My heart soared because this--seeing God answer our prayers and bring fruit from simple shoeboxes --really is what it's all about.
Posted by Kathy Schriefer at 4:59 PM