It is crunch-time! This is the last weekend to pack boxes for Operation Christmas Child, before National Collection Week begins, November 12-19, 2012. If you’ve never been involved in the program sponsored by Samaritan’s Purse, let me tell you that it is a great opportunity for Christians in America to partner with a truly inspirational organization. Samaritan’s Purse has been ministering to children across the globe since 1993, with the collection and distribution of over 100 million gift-filled shoe boxes! Operation Christmas Child has not only provided gifts for countless children, but has opened doors of opportunity within these communities to share the love of Jesus Christ.
Samaritan’s Purse has made the process very simple, allowing even the busiest of us to make a difference in the life of a child. Let me show you the five easy steps I completed to pack my own box this year!
Step One: Start with a standard-sized shoe box or plastic container with a lid. The shoebox can be wrapped, which is what I did last year. This year, I decided to use a shoe-box-sized plastic tote, which I decorated with colorful stickers!
Step Three: Fill the box with age-appropriate NEW gifts, such as pencils, crayons, coloring books, small toys, etch-a-sketch, stuffed animal, school supplies, notepad, tooth brush, toothpaste, comb, washcloth, etc. You can also consult the Operation Christmas Child web site for more gift ideas, and to find out which items might be inappropriate.
Step Four: After packing your box visit the Operation Christmas Child web site to obtain a label: http://samaritanspurse.org/OCC
To participate in the Follow Your Box program, which will allow you to see which country your box ultimately ends up in, make a $7 donation online, and print out the label set with the bar code.
To participate without tracking, print out the regular label set, and include a check for $7 per box. Cut out and mark your label with the appropriate age group and tape it securely to the top of the box.
Step Five: Once your box is ready to go, you can find your nearest drop-off location by typing in your zip-code. My nearest location happens to be my church Grace Baptist, which is ever-so-convenient for me, so I’ll be taking my box to church this weekend!
But maybe there are still a few of you who’d like to be involved, but don’t have the time to shop before this weekend. Operation Christmas Child has even thought of you! On their web site is a Build-A-Box option, where for $30, you can build a virtual box, and at your direction, Samaritan’s Purse will pack a box for you!
With just a small investment of time and resources, you can make a difference in the life of a child—and that child will, this Christmas know the love of Jesus because you chose to make the investment!
Now, go pack a box!
On the journey toward Home,