I didn’t want to pack boxes for Operation Christmas Child. There. I said it. I didn’t mind doing it, if we were going to, but I was overwhelmed with shipping care packages to Melody and also to Molly whom we sponsor and I thought we just wouldn’t this year. I mean, tomorrow is the deadline at church so it’s not like I’d run out this evening to pack a couple of shoeboxes. That’s not how giving is done, it’s careful, planned out, exact.
The pastor just couldn’t comprehend why I would have any problem with this last minute mission. It took everything within me to not sabotage his mission and derail the entire family by riling up the kids about what a crazy idea it was to do this so LAST MINUTE.
So we went.
And we had fun, the boys into getting things the boy would like and we changed our age range for the girl box since the 4 year old was so intent on getting things for “the girl” that she herself would also like. Her dad had showed her the OCC promo video before we dashed off to the store, so undeterred by this waiting until the eleventh hour was he. She’d seen the video, she was on a mission. It seemed letting it be personal was a good plan so I went with it. See. I can be spontaneous.
While we were there, I also picked up some of the Christmas items for the girls in China and butter. We’ve been out of butter.
The thing is. It was all so painless and fun. The check out lady said to me: “Are you gathering boxes of things to donate or something?” I just smiled and said yes. I didn’t dare take credit for this noble expedition and no, I didn’t share the mission or the gospel either. I just smiled and nodded.
We brought the boxes home, filled them up; put them by the door. I was looking in our boxes of pictures because that’s what you’re supposed to do, add a picture and I found a plain white envelope with the words “To Mama, In Taiwan” written on it. Oh, my sweet Jay and his letter to his foster mom that he worked so hard to write. I have kept that letter safe and sound sealed up in my box. It just feels so sacred, I can’t mail it (I don’t know where it goes!), I can’t throw it away and I just can’t bring myself to open it and have someone translate it. So, I keep it safe.
It was a funny feeling, holding that letter and thinking of my boy whom God said I cannot have as a son, but will forever love and pray for. It was a night spent with my beautiful family, full of blessed ones. There was Timothy, Katie Ann, Josiah, Nathan, Maury and Hosanna gathering gifts for Melody and Molly and two unknown children somewhere out in the world and there were prayers and memories of Jay. So many children. I always wanted a large family, but I never dreamed that God would give me so many children of the heart, how can one woman be so blessed and how can one heart contain such love?
I didn’t want to fill an Operation Christmas Child box, but I’m glad I did. 🙂