The Least of These

My dad died VERY suddenly almost eight years ago - just 5 days before Christmas. I had already purchased his gift and wrapped it - a navy and red sweatshirt from Old Navy. Big spender, right? That wrapped present sat in our bedroom for the entire first year. I didn't know what to do with it. Do I unwrap it and wear it and think of him? That didn't make sense. Do I regift it? Didn't feel right. Return it for a measly 10 bucks? Out of the question. It took the whole year for me to figure out what to do with it.

 <flashback> When I was a kid we lived in a suburb of Dallas, TX. Dad would work long hours across the city and fight the MixMaster highways of Dallas to get home. The exit to our house took him under an overpass about a mile or two away from home, where he would pass a homeless guy named Larry. Many nights, Dad would come home, and before feeding himself, would fill a plate of whatever mom had and take it to Larry. I remember him taking blankets, pillows, his own clothes, and his Bible to share with Larry. I have no idea whatever happened to that guy, but I am convinced my father has extra crowns to lay at the feet of Jesus because of him.
So, I decided, in honor of my dad, to give his present to one of the panhandlers on the street corner. I drove around with it in my car for days, waiting to see someone. When I did, I rolled down my window and told him I couldn't give it to my dad, so I wanted him to have it. He started crying and calling me an angel. It was a $10 sweatshirt, but it made his day. All of this to say, could you buy ONE MORE GIFT this Christmas? Perhaps in memory of a loved one? There are tons of sales on gloves, socks, hats, scarves and sweatshirts and for just a little bit of extra, you could really brighten someone else's Christmas.  We have a giving tree in the foyer for Michigan Place families and a Christmas event there on Saturday, December 9. Would you consider getting something on the tree and finding out how you can serve there?  Matthew 25:40 reminds us, “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

-Carrie Morrell
Financial Assistant
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