Over the years thousands of us have filled shoe boxes with gifts for children through Samaritan’s Purse and their Operation Christmas Child. But few of us get to see those gifts being opened. Today at Holy Cross I was able to see the delight and excitement as children received gifts and a message of hope.
If you’ve ever wondered what a room full of children opening their boxes looks like, it’s something like this:
Samaratin’s Purse is starting to work in Belize, and through partnering with a local church in San Mateo, gave these gifts to the students of Holy Cross as part of raising awareness of what their ministry does. They are looking for local partners they can train and equip to run a 12 week discipleship course for children who are interested after receiving a gift box and information about what the greatest gift we are given really is. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Today’s event began as a usual church service for the children, including songs and bible stories.
The greatest gift
We asked the children if they thought the greatest gift was in the large boxes at the front. Of course they said yes! But no – this is just A gift, the greatest gift is from God. Each child received their very own box, along with a booklet explaining the gift from God.
Opening the gifts
At last, the children were allowed to open their boxes. It’s was such fun to see them opening the boxes and looking at their new toys. Boys were shining flashlights. Girls were exclaiming at dolls. Children were smiling everywhere I looked. It was truly a special moment and we are grateful to the many individuals who took the time to donate boxes and make those smiles possible.