The first frost of 2012 came last night. For a Salvation Army officer this first frost quickens the pulse and sets into motion more urgent thoughts of Christmas sermons, Holiday activities, and those Red Kettles! There is a real urgency to raise as much income as one can through this giving season because that money allows us provide our helping ministry throughout the year.
This morning I spent some time reflecting on some of the folks whose lives have been impacted by the gift found in a red kettle donation. There was a single mom with 3 kids who wa struggling just to pay her “normal” bills without the added burden of Christmas gifts. A family came to mind who had lost their husband and father to cancer the summer before, and the dad who lost his job to “foreign competition” and wasn’t sure how he was going to make Christmas special for his wife and children. These are but a few of the real life stories of people who have been impacted by those generous gifts found in a red kettle.
I am so grateful that even as we are able to meet a physical need, we are also able to meet a spiritual need. Each encounter with a hurting individual is an opportunity to share the life changing Gospel of Jesus Christ. I am so amazed that God has allowed me to particiapte in the eternal by being His hands and feet, and by giving me a voice to share His love. I am also thankful for the opportunity to connect those who want to help with those who need a little help!
My prayer for this Christmas season is that I will see others as God sees me, in need of grace, love, and mercy … and a good word of encouragement!