This is Adricia, she is 3 years old. She sang at her church on Christmas Day and this is the dress she wore. Isn’t she a beautiful child of God!!!!! Marvelously and wonderfully made by God. Bless your obedience Adricia, I love you!
We received our letter in the Spring of 2008. It was very exciting and brought many emotions to my heart. I raced around showing everyone the letter. I couldn’t believe that we really got one! I wanted the world to know that GOD does answer prayers and he DOES work through these little Shoeboxes. This was my first experience with them and I couldn’t contain myself. I still can’t. Well, when we got the letter, it explained that Fred lived in the city of Andranofasika, Madagascar, and he had access to e-mail there. So I sent him an email. It took awhile, but I did get one back in a few weeks. Fred explained to me that he lived in the city, about 100 miles from his tiny village where his sisters and brothers live with his parents. It is so tiny there is no mail service there. So, whatever I sent to them would have to go to Fred and then he would take it to them the next time he went to the village. We communicated via email through the year of 2008, sending photo’s and notes to the children.
Here is a photo of Fred’s parents. They are rice farmers. They have to pay for each child’s schooling and it is not an easy life. A box of crayons in Africa costs $5! So, for them to even be able to send us a letter was pretty amazing. The cost of the stamp, the paper, etc. Those are things that we take for granted. Don’t we? I am inspired to draw or paint Fred’s mother. There is something about her that speaks to my heart. The way she wears her shawl, how beautiful it is, despite the conditions they live in she is a proud woman. She is a picture of Christ to me. That is little Adricia behind her, just grinning, barely clothed. What a difference from the dress in the picture before! I think the dress and shoes are very, very, special and will be cherished for a very long time to come. The material hanging in the doorway also intrigues me. It looks like it has clouds and birds woven into it. Interesting. Dad looks thin and tired. My prayers are with you…May God hold you near and dear to His heart.
Here are the children holding some of the things that were in their shoeboxes. They are ALL holding the walnut cross that was made in my woodshop. I love this picture because it shows me how we are all united by the cross that Jesus died on. One thing I want to share is that I had a lot of help in making that cross. One friend gave me the wood, and another friend gave me a really nice gift of a scrollsaw last year, so that I could cut the cross. The cross was prayed over by our SS class, and it has many of our church members fingerprints on it. Fingerprints of God. When the kids found out that “we” had made the cross, they ALL wanted it. So this year I was able to send them each a cross of their own. They ALL send their thanks to our entire congregation! They love you all very much and pray for you each day.
But the most amazing thing about this story is how they got this year’s box! God is so very good! I wanted to send them another Shoebox for Christmas and I emailed Fred and asked him the best way to send it. Well, he emailed me back ( God IS IN THE TECHNOLOGY!) and told me that Luke Dollar could bring it. He sent me Luke’s address. When I looked at it I was startled. It was less than 2 hours from here. He was home for Christmas and he lives in NC, near Charlotte!!!! So, I was able to send this huge box of stuff to NC for Luke to take to Madagascar. It would have cost me an arm and a leg to send it from here to Madagascar. So I was very thankful that God had provided transportation for the box. I just think it is amazing at how God works. He is working all the time, all we have to do is WAKE UP to it! So, the children got thier box and were VERY ELATED ! Fred sent me a note saying how much they loved it. God is so good, so very good. PRAISE GOD!
I would like to encourage my readers to get involved in the Shoebox Ministry. It will change your heart forever. The Shoeboxes reached 8 million children last year! That’s 8 MILLION CHILDREN that have received the GOSPEL through a SHOEBOX in ONE YEAR! Our work is NOT done, there are still many, many people who have not heard about Jesus. Filling a Shoebox will help YOU be a missionary! So, please check it out today!
Operation Christmas Child brings joy and hope to children in desperate situations around the world through gift-filled shoe boxes and the Good News of God’s love. Since 1993, more than 61 million shoe boxes have been packed, shipped, and delivered across the globe. People of all ages can be involved in this simple, hands-on missions project while focusing on the true meaning of Christmas—Jesus Christ. http://www.samaritanspurse.org/index.php/OCC/
May you be blessed and BE A BLESSING to someone else!
In Christ’s all consuming love,
Good Morning! Last night I read ( grinning like a cheshire cat ) the following excerpt from “Saying Yes” by Cindy West. For all of you creative types, I know you will appreciate this!
” As far back as I can remember, nothing gave me greater joy as a kid than when a new box of crayons made their way into my hands. My favorite was the box that held sixty-four spectacular colors featuring the famous Built-In Sharpener on the back. Opening the lid, I would close my eyes and inhale the wonderful, waxy aroma. I truly believed each crayon had been handpicked and placed in this particular box just for me. Still do actually”
That takes me back a few years! I still love the smell of crayons, their colors, the names of the colors, the paper around them, the way they feel, and especially the way they smell. My 8 year old daughter recently told me that someone in her class had a box of 96 and I wanted to run out and buy her the box of 120! Just so she could have the biggest box in the class. Of course I didn’t, but I sure wanted to. haha! I just love crayons and colored pencils and paper, coloring books, ink, erasers, pencils, pens. I go GA-GA over the paper aisle, especially in Michael’s or MishMish ( an art supply store.) I’m not the only one!
This brings me to another thought…how many times have I taken in the smell of Creation and Our Creator? The smell of the air, the color of the blue sky, not just blue, but Carolina blue, with the bright white clouds overlaying the blue sky.
The smell of pine trees, the forest, leaves, a woodstove burning, or the smell of spring when the flowers bloom and the grass pushes through the dew softened winter ground.
I pray that I can always inhale Our Creator the way I inhale those Crayolas! I imagine the colors I will see when I get to heaven, just like the Crayola colors…Atomic Tangerine, Blue Violet, Brick Red, Jazzberry Jam, Atomic Blue and the list goes on. There will be colors I have never seen before. I can only imagine….
Just as Cindy said in her book, ” I truly believed each crayon had been handpicked and placed in this particular box just for me. Still do actually” I believe, with all my heart ,that each one of us has been designed, sculpted, and engineered for one purpose and that is to glorify God in all that we do. He created us for HIS pleasure! He has instilled certain gifts into each one of us so we can all work together to praise His Holy Name and to share Him with everyone we meet. Just like the Crayolas are all different colors, each named accordingly, so are we. We were designed by the Master Artist, Creator of All, Father God in Heaven, where the hues are bright and brilliant!
Have a blessed day!