PUBLISHED BY BETH STOLICKER
USA (MNN) – Fall has come and that means Christmas is just around the corner.
A Christmas Partnering
But with Christmas less than three months away, Family Christian has again partnered with Operation Christmas Child for this holiday season. Serving as distribution centers, all Family Christian locations will be stocked with empty boxes for customers to fill for a child.
For those who don’t know, Operation Christmas Child is put on by the Samaritan’s Purse in partnership with numerous other organizations and churches. It works by individuals taking a shoebox, like the ones available at Family Christian, and filling it with gifts for a child in need in a different country.
Gifts often range from pads of paper and pencils for school to stuffed bears, apparel, and hygiene items. All boxes are extensively reviewed before being shipped out-of-country to make sure the shoeboxes include appropriate gifts. Items such as food or toys like army men, which can encourage violence or war, are things to steer clear of.
Gospel Through a Shoe Box
But these presents are so much more than just shoeboxes filled with gifts. They’re also an opportunity to share the Gospel.
“I had the opportunity last year to actually go and distribute boxes. And to watch the kids open the box, to watch how the local community and the pastor used that to actually grow the Church. And actually even establish a church in one of the communities that we were in,” Family Christian’s Mike Bowles shares.So kids open the boxes, they hear the Gospel, and they’re actually invited then to participate in the ‘
“So kids open the boxes, they hear the Gospel, and they’re actually invited then to participate in the ‘Greatest Journey,’ which is a discipleship program. And it was just amazing to watch.”
Operation Christmas Child’s gifts are a tangible way to share Christ’s love and open doors to share the reason for the season, Christ’s birth so that he could redeem and save the lost. And you can help share the Gospel message this Christmas, too!
How to Help
All you need to do is grab a shoebox from a Family Christian store near you, fill it with the appropriate gifts and deliver it to a drop-off location or mail it to Samaritan’s Purse. Shoeboxes will be collected during November 14-21 this year.
But if making a shoebox isn’t your thing, will you still pray? Pray for the children who will receive these shoeboxes, for the message of the Gospel being sent out, for the teams delivering the shoeboxes, the pastors who are working for Christ in their peoples’ lives and for lives to be transformed.
For drop-off locations, what to pack, and more click here!