Compassion, kindness, and generosity. How often do you take opportunities to practice and teach these qualities in your household? It’s interesting to think about, isn’t it? Even if I just look back through the past week (as a full grown adult), I’d have to admit that there was not enough of these admirable yet sometimes hard to exhibit traits. The world that surrounds us is full of opportunities to complain and grumble.
Even as difficult as it is for us as adults to show compassion, kindness, and generosity on a regular basis – think about how much more difficult it is for children to do so without being taught. I’m such a huge believer that any time that any of us have an opportunity to teach the children in our lives to love others, it should be something we act on.
I’m so excited to share that for the first year ever I’m going to be participating in Operation Christmas Child! I’ve got my shoe boxes full of goodies ready to send of to bless a little one with the gift of love this year. It has been such a fun experience and I want to invite each and every one of the Bargain Blessings readers to join me in this opportunity to change a child’s life…forever!
About Operation Christmas Child
Operation Christmas Child is a worldwide children’s project of Samaritan’s Purse that uses simple gift-filled shoe boxes containing school supplies, toys, necessity items and notes of encouragement to let hurting children know God loves them and they are not forgotten. Millions of hurting children who are victims of poverty, natural disaster, war, terrorism and famine receive Operation Christmas Child shoe box gifts. For some of these boys and girls, it is the first gift they have ever received. Through the power of a simple gift and the message of hope through Jesus Christ, these children learn that they are loved and not forgotten. After individuals pack shoe box gifts and take them to more than 3,500 drop-off locations, the shoe boxes are transported to processing centers where they are prepared for overseas shipment. The shoe box gifts are then loaded onto trucks, sea containers and cargo planes bound for the far reaches of the earth. Once the gifts are transported to countries around the world, Samaritan’s Purse works with volunteer ministry partners and pastors to distribute them by trucks, trains, boats and even yaks and camels. This year, Operation Christmas Child expects to reach a milestone with more than 100 million children receiving shoe box gifts since 1993. That means at least 100 million children will have experienced hope and the love of Jesus Christ! BUT, it doesn’t have to stop there. Their plan is to go above and beyond 100 million. There are over 2 billion children in the world and half live in poverty. They hope to collect more shoe box gifts for children this year to reach as many as possible. You can join OCC in reaching this goal! Here is how:
How to Pack a Shoe Box
1. Use an empty shoe box (standard size, please) or a small plastic container. You can wrap the box (lid separately), but wrapping is not required. Most importantly, pray for the child who will receive your gift.
2. Determine whether your gift will be for a boy or a girl, and the child’s age category: 2-4, 5-9, or 10-14. Print out the appropriate boy/girl label by downloading the artwork. Mark the correct age category on the label, and tape the label to the top of your box.
3. Fill the box with a variety of gifts that will bring delight to a child. Here are some gift ideas to get you started:
4. Please donate $7 or more for each shoe box you prepare to help cover shipping and other project costs. You can give online by using the “Follow Your Box Donation” option, or you can write a check to Samaritan’s Purse (note “OCC” on memo line) and place it in an envelope on top of the gift items inside your box. If you or your family are preparing more than one shoe box, please make one combined donation.
5. Place a rubber band around each closed shoe box and drop it off at the collection center nearest you during collection week, November 12-19, 2012. For locations and hours of collection visit the OCC Drop-Off Locations page where you can find the nearest place to take your shoe box by entering your ZIP Code or you can call 1-800-353-5949.
How to Pack a Virtual Shoe Box
This year, OCC is offering an option for those that are not able to pack their own shoe box through their virtual Build-A-Box website! for $30 their staff will pack and send a box with gifts for you. You can also use this option to gift a box to a friend so they can have an opportunity to build a box.
Join Me to Change a Child’s Life
Join me this holiday season build a box with your family to teach kindness, compassion, and generosity.
BlogFrog will match the first 200 boxes that are built. Pledge your commitment below to build a box today on Facebook or Twitter!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Operation Christmas Child. The opinions and text are all mine.