Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Challenge ~ Operation Christmas Child

I have personally been involved with supporting Operation Christmas Child for over 13 years now. It is a ministry of Samaritan's Purse which is a Christian international relief organization founded by Franklin Graham. It has been my privilege to work in many areas of this ministry on a volunteer basis and I have always been impressed by the amazing heart of the OCC staff.

Each year, OCC collects shoe boxes filled with small gifts and then distributes them to children all over the world who are victims of poverty, war, and disease. Each child who receives a shoe box gift also receives a story book, in their own language, that shares the story of Jesus. Millions of shoe boxes have been delivered over the years, and countless families have come to know Jesus as a result of this ministry.

National Collection Week for OCC has already passed. But, this year they have an awesome new online "Build a Shoe Box" opportunity. It is easy to choose the gender and age of the child that you wish to send a shoe box to, then choose a few basic items to include in your box. OCC staff will assemble a shoe box to your specifications (with extra items beyond the few that you choose), including if you wish, a note and photo that you you have uploaded to personalize your box. You will also be notified via email when and where your shoe box is delivered.

The cost to send a shoe box online is $35. I usually spend about $20 packing a shoe box myself, and then add $7 to help cover delivery to the child. So, for only $8 more, this is a great opportunity to send a box if you didn't have time to pack one before the collection date passed.

Operation Christmas Child is a worthy organization with the most important task in the world, sharing the message of Christ. Packing a shoe box is an inexpensive and tangible way to touch the life of a child you would never otherwise have the opportunity to meet.

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