My husband and I took three of our grandchildren on a special shopping trip. It was explained to them that we would be picking out items to put in shoe-boxes for Operation Christmas Child. After dinner we would go to our church and join with others to pack the boxes.
The question of, “Do we get one too?” was something we expected to hear from six-year-olds. This is where the teaching began. My husband sat patiently and explained that these packages would be going to children in who lived in poverty and didn’t have all of the things we had.
Later we arrived at the church and placed our items in the assigned places. There were spots for school supplies, toys, clothing, personal hygiene items and more.
At the starting time each of the girls took a box and we guided them through the lines to choose what to add to theirs. Then we went to a finishing table where the boxes were labeled for boy or girl and the appropriate age group. As we waited in line for the label I bent down and told my granddaughter that this box would be the only gift a little girl received and she had been the one to fill it. She beamed and couldn’t wait to pick up another empty box to fill.
We had only expected them to fill one box each. Instead they continued putting together gifts for children who needed them. The seeds of compassion had been sown.
Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it. (Proverbs 22:6 NIV)