Flipping through the stack of mail, I came across the newest gift catalog for Samaritan’s Purse. Knowing what the kids’ reaction would be, I waved the catalog under their noses. “Look what came in the mail today!”
Their faces were priceless. Excitedly they all reached for the magazine, but I pulled it back. “One at a time,” I laughed.
Their chatter warmed my heart as they all called out which gift they wanted to buy. Baby chicks! Milk! Hot meals! A goat! Every year this catalog arrives in the mail full of gifts that can be purchased for children and families in need. It’s absolutely our favorite time of the year and the only time all year our kids earn an allowance.
“Unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” -Matthew 18:5
They pore over the catalog, circling the items they wish to purchase like gospel booklets or blankets or hot meals or even a ‘Jesus loves me’ lamb. And then they do their usual chores and we keep track of them. They might make .25 for picking up toys or .50 for making their bed. Not a huge amount but enough that they are proud of what they accomplish and they know it’s going to help someone. Each child has a mason jar they put their hard earned money in and they save all of their change. In December, we count the money and see if each child has met their goal. If not, they usually ask to do extra chores to earn that last little bit because they want the gifts to be solely from them and not from mama and daddy.
“I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.” -Revelation 21:6
It’s funny to me that or kids usually lean towards the farming gifts like baby chicks or dairy animals or helping a poor farming family. They understand how important it is to be able to raise and grow your own food and what an amazing thing it is to give a family, especially a man or woman, the tools they need to provide for their own family.
All the money our kids earn is saved from October through December and when they’ve reached their goal, we fill out the order form included in the catalog. You can order online if that’s easier for your family.
My favorite part? If you’ve lost a loved one or want to honor someone’s memory with your gift, there’s even a place to do that! Last Christmas was my first Christmas without my mom and I loved being able to do this in her memory. We received a little keepsake card in the mail that said our gift was given in memory of her. Amazing.
It’s difficult for me to write about this without getting emotional because I read the stories of real people who are suffering because they don’t have food or clean water. They live where Bibles are not readily accessible and we can actually be a part of getting the Gospel to them! I want to be part of something bigger! We can do that by sharing God’s love and meeting someone’s physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.
There are gifts to fit everyone’s budget from $5 to $150. If you’re looking for something special to do with your family this year, do this! The Samaritan’s Purse is a respectable, legitimate Christian organization founded by Franklin Graham, son of Billy Graham. Visit their website for an online version of the catalog or fill out a request to receive one in the mail.
One last thought, let’s do this in secret, shall we?