Generosity at Christmas
Sherri Kirkpatrick, Lee’s Summit, MO, USA
…who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them; who keeps faith forever; who executes justice for the oppressed; who gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets the prisoners free; the LORD opens the eyes of the blind. The LORD lifts up those who are bowed down; the LORD loves the righteous. The LORD watches over the strangers; he upholds the orphan and the widow, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin. —Psalm 146:6–9 NRSV
The Woods Chapel Congregation in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, adopted HealthEd Connect as their Christmas focus charity for the second year in a row. Last year the kids took little shamba hut banks and scavenged their homes for “luxury items.” Upon finding an item they thought children in Zambia would not have, they made a donation to the shamba hut. In addition, they collect money in a jar each Sunday of the year.
When we gathered to kick off another similar project, the kids were excited and had begun to feel they knew the Zambian kids. When I asked the children to guess how much they thought they collected last year, one little boy said rather hopefully, “Twenty dollars?” I assured him that was a lot of money but they had collected even more than that. There was an audible little gasp from the children (and spontaneous applause from the congregation) when we flashed the total of $1683.78 on the screen! That’s enough to pay two teachers’ salaries for a whole year with money left over to buy school lunches and books. Now that’s real Kid Power!
Advent Prayer Phrase
Anticipation deepens within.
Invitation to Spiritual Practice
Spend a few moments dwelling in God’s presence. Pay attention to where your heart feels drawn into prayer. What words, images, or themes in this story lead you to reflect on your own faith journey? What is God’s invitation to you this day?