It’s finally done! I delivered gifts to the last family last night (most of the other gifts were handed out last Saturday). We gave out 2 presents (1 clothing gift, one toy) to exactly 190 kids this Christmas. That’s 380 wrapped presents – the most we’ve every delivered. Here’s a glimse of a good chunk of them sorted and ready to go:
I am so grateful to all of you who bought gifts, gave money toward gifts, or helped deliver them (special shout-outs to Marci Muno who helped type in all of the families names and sizes and assigned who was buying for whom and my Mom for getting gifts together for the 50-plus moms of all those kids). It’s a huge undertaking, and I couldn’t do it without all of you. Here’s Larry loading up his truck for delivery:
The process generally brings me a great deal of stress. But I’m learning to keep my joy in the midst of all of it. As my friend Sam told me – “This is the day the Lord has made. Rejoice in it, even if that day is full of stress.”
So in the midst of emailing all the gift details to all those buying presents, driving all over town collecting presents, making sure all the kids were covered, assuring parents who signed up a month late for gifts that we could still get them, receiving countless phone calls about sizes and toys, wrapping twenty some-odd presents that Mission 2540 purchased, sorting all 380, and rounding up enough folks to deliver all of them, I had to find the joy.
And that joy comes from seeing the eyes of children light up. It’s seeing the smiles spread across their faces. It’s seeing the grateful looks of mothers and fathers and grandmothers, knowing that their kids are sure to have a gift to unwrap this Christmas. It’s knowing that we were able to share the love of God to over 50 hurting families through an act as simple as wrapping up and delivering $30 worth of presents to each child. And it’s knowing that we do all of it in remembrance of the gift God gave us so many years ago.
That brings me a joy that far, far exceeds anything else I could possibly experience.