One of my favorite times of year is Christmas, especially because of  Operation Christmas Child. Over the years, my boys and I have had great fun buying things to fill our shoeboxes to be sent to children around the world. I’d let them pick the gender and age of the child they wanted to buy things for and then let them go pick things out. Then I let them pack the boxes, which they loved showing to their Papa when he got home from work. Now that my boys are teenagers, we have had the privilege of volunteering for the last two years in the OCC Atlanta Processing Center. The most awesome part of the day spent there is that every hour, everyone in the entire warehouse stops what they are doing and we hold a box and pray over the boxes. How cool is that! We hear stories throughout the day of the impact the boxes have made to the children receiving them. One box had many items, but the most unusual was a pair of size 14 shoes. You might think, “How is this going to go to a kid with a size 14 foot?” Well, the chances would be about 0% unless you serve our awesome GOD. The boxes are distributed randomly, and that box went to a boy with a size 14 foot! Another boy received a small doll in his box. You might think that doll was put in there by mistake. You would be wrong. That boy was so thrilled to be able to give a present to his little sister on Christmas Day. That doll meant more to him then all the boy gifts for himself.

Since 1993, over 100 million children from 130 countries have experienced God’s love through the power of a simple shoebox of gifts. This year, Cornerstone Kids – Rock City and Pebble Path – are collecting shoeboxes until November 17. Each week, the kids will be sent home with information to help them pack their shoeboxes. A picture and encouraging note from your family in the box is always very special, too! And don’t forget to help cover shipping and other costs related to delivering your shoeboxes to children overseas by donating $7 for each box you prepare. We will pray over these boxes during our Cornerstone Kids service on November 17. You can follow the journey that your shoebox makes here. Shoebox packing information is also available at the Information Desk in the lobby at Hamilton Road and the Information Kiosk at Lee-Scott on Sunday mornings.

Operation Christmas Child works with churches as their partners in order to make this work. It’s an awesome ministry I hope to be a part of for the rest of my life. I hope you will, too!

Laurie Waer

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