One of the things I really love this time of year is the Angel Tree that goes up at our church. Do you have one? If you aren't familiar with the Angel Tree Program click here. You'll learn that this program is associated with Prison Fellowship.
Each year the tree at our church is decorated with angel shaped tags. Each tag has a child's first name and some little details such as their clothing size and a description of a gift they'd like to receive. One I picked up is for a 13 year old girl named Hope. She is wishing for a new pair of jeans or a lime green sweatshirt. That doesn't seem like so much to wish for, does it?
The children who's names appear on these tags have at least one parent in prison. It is tough for a parent in prison to do any Christmas shopping for their child so we help out a bit. We don't care if the parent gets credit for the gift. We don't care what crime the parent committed. We care that the child feels loved. Here's words from their website that explains the mission...
Angel Tree, a program of Prison Fellowship, seeks to reconcile prisoners and their families to God, to each other, and to their communities through the transforming love and grace of Jesus Christ. Through your support of Angel Tree, prisoners have the opportunity to send their children a Christmas gift and the Good News of Jesus Christ!
I love being a small part of this program. I am aware the purpose of the program is not to make me feel good, but it does. I really don't care much for shopping but each year I have to say that I really enjoy making the purchases for these children we don't even know. When I read the words above about the mission of the Angel Tree Program I realize their is a much bigger picture than just the part we play in purchasing these gifts.
Do you have an opportunity to share in some kind of special Christmas Program such as the Angel Tree? I'd love to hear your ideas. I think we can inspire one another!