By Eleanor Roberts (Junior Art Teacher)
Isn't it a wonderful feeling when you watch someone receive a gift, when that gift is something that they truly need, or something that they really wanted but was out of reach, or something that just speaks love to the person receiving it? Especially when we ourselves are the giver. We feel a sense of warmth and joy, blessed to be able to make a difference to the receiver. Even when we don't see the transaction, that blessing is still tangible, through our sense of imagination, knowing that our gift will make a difference.
What a delight it has been to join together as a junior school to support Operation Christmas Child, a project of Samaritan's Purse that delivers shoeboxes filled with gifts for children in need all over the world.
This week in junior school, we experienced that joy continually as a flow of gorgeous children brought in boxes they had thoughtfully and generously packed with their families. They will never see the transaction that takes place for the child who receives the gift, but they felt the joy of being involved, handing over the box, knowing they had done something good to help someone in need.
On Friday, Mrs Nicholas and a band of excited and willing helpers loaded up her X-trail with 147 shoeboxes (well done Junior School!) to take to the representative at the nearest collection point who informed us that they are headed for the Philippines.
We are all familiar with the saying 'it is more blessed to give than to receive', but did you know that it was Jesus who first spoke those words (Acts 20:35)? Jesus said these words to encourage us to give, to help one another and to share, but also as a statement of truth, from firsthand experience as a gracious and generous giver. As we approach the Christmas season, as we prepare to exchange gifts with our families and friends, let us remember God's greatest gift to the world, His son Jesus Christ. God gave him to the world, he lived a blameless life, brought the gift of hope and healing to many during his lifetime, and gave up his life as a payment for our own wrongdoings so that we could be with him in eternity. What a gift! The thought that I am dwelling on today is that Jesus feels that wonderful, tangible joy of giving when we receive His gift of life to us.