An idea popped into my head at the oddest hour. Ever happen to you? I believe I was thinking along the lines of school, I vaguely remember hearing an announcement on the radio, and then the assignment was clear. You see, the one thing the kids did not need this school year was backpacks. Last year’s are still in good shape, so I crossed them off the list. Until…
A thought came to me – other children will need a new one this year, what happens when they arrive to school… and have whatever was available to them – a Kroger bag? It’s real. It happens. I’ve worked in schools.
So today, the kids and I went shopping. Armed with nothing but a simple list and a desire to give, my three precious gifts chose items and filled a backpack, not for themselves, but so another child could have something they could call their own, something they could use a pen to mark with their own name. They chose personally, they chose with another in mind, they even gave of their own earnings, unprompted.
THIS is my job as their mother. THIS is what God calls me to do.
Train up a child in the way they should go.
When you do this for the least of these, you do this for me.
Think of others often, it lessens your bent towards selfishness (the Heather version).
What my heart simply smiles at is the conversation that unfolded because of this opportunity. I didn’t hear words laced with some whine and a side of complaint. I heard words that asked questions about what would be good choices for another. These words led to others – words of compassion, words of wondering, words of gratefulness in light of items we already have instead of have-nots. Nothing can top this sweet melody. This is the sound of hearts being shaped by the Words we read about, applied in real life, crafted in a relationship they have with the One who not only created them, but everything they see.
So tomorrow, we will head off to Lifeway Christian Bookstore to deliver our wares. My children will never see the recipient of their giving. They haven’t been promised that, but, they have been given a precious perspective – give simply because what we have been given is a gift in itself. Give simply as a manager, not as an owner.
What do they offer in your community as an outreach for back to school? Are you being prompted to join?