Tuesday, November 24, 2009

How Many is 50,000?

I guess if it's 50,000 grains of sand, it's not much. 50,000 insects in the Amazon? Not even an exhale's worth. 50,000 drops of water in the ocean? Insignificant.

How about if it's 50,000 kids who won't be receiving a Christmas present from their mom or dad because the parent is in prison?

Yeah, it stinks.

Right now there are 50,000 kids whose parents who have signed them up for the Angel Tree program through Prison Fellowship Ministries who are scheduled to get . . . NOTHING. For a lot of reasons, including the recession, churches have taken fewer angels to serve locally. This leaves Angel Tree with more unserved angels in past years.

Providentially, and in the way HE loves to do it, God has given Angel Tree a powerful tool this year to help those children. For the first time, this year through the gift of the internet, individuals (like you and me) can go directly to the Angel Tree website and sponsor a child or several children! You can choose a location, age, and gender. Angel Tree has partnered with an online specialty toys vendor and has preselected wholesome toys for all ages. Their website tool is so cool -- you can see exactly where the needs are and respond immediately! (And I love how God made the activation of this tool coincide with the year they would need it most. That just makes me smile!)

So what does Angel Tree ship to these children? An age-appropriate FUN toy, the Gospel message, and a personalized message from the incarcerated parent. If you doubt that can make a difference -- read some of the stories from the website. Here's one just to get you going: Tiffany's Story

Some of you, my bloggy friends, are unable to sponsor a child and THAT IS OKAY. But will you consider passing this message on? Can we figure out a way to make Angel Tree go viral? Even my bloggy friends who are in Europe -- you can pass this on to your American blog followers.

Folks, you know me. This is not a scam. I know some of the people who work for Prison Fellowship. None of them are getting wealthy doing this. It's a MINISTRY. They live this passage:

31"When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

34"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'

37"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

40"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'

41"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'

44"They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?'

45"He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.' Matthew 25:31-45

Blessings to all of you!


Amy said...

My church where I grew up did this. It was so amazing. We as kids went and picked out gifts for our angel. It was a very memorable experience.

Thanks for reminding me. I will definately go check out that site.


Anonymous said...

I will post this soon on my blog :)