There are so many treasures discovered during the Christmas Season at Mission Arlington®:
The volume of gifts which our community gives is treasure enough, but the specific gifts are, in and of themselves, a kind of treasure. From huge stuffed animals to footballs, to dolls, bikes, and so much more, our “Christmas Store” was filled to overflowing with brand new gifts. Each gift was purchased for the purpose of blessing a child. These gifts brought special joy to children across our community on Christmas morning – a true treasure to see. We are so grateful for each person who made these gifts possible.
People who Provided Gifts
The provision of enough gifts to provide for nearly 33,000 children is an extraordinary thing to experience. Gifts came from individuals, families, civic clubs, schools, small businesses, and corporations. Gifts came as part of a group project, or just from someone with a heart to give. Children were actually a big part of the gift-giving again this year. One young lady made something special, then sold it over the internet and used the proceeds to provide gifts for children in need. Other children participated in school drives, or gave up their birthday celebrations in lieu of gifts. We get to watch all of this happen.
Children who Received the Gifts
Ordinary people need help every now and then, including people from all walks of life. Over the past couple of weeks, more than 7,000 families came through our Christmas Store, and they have been among the most gracious and kind people we have met. What a privilege it has been to be there when they receive the gifts. One lady wrote: “Y’all blessed me soo many times when we were struggling so bad. I am forever grateful. Thank you.”
It took more than 7,000 volunteers over a two week time-span to make the Christmas Store work. Volunteers came from all across North Texas, and from all walks of life. Some were young, and some were “more seasoned.” Some came on their days off, and others came in a group from their place of employment. Volunteers came with energy, and with a heart to care for and to serve others in need – truly a treasure.
The Christmas Story
The “reason for the season,” the birth of God’s son, Jesus Christ at Christmas is the greatest treasure of the season. Mission Arlington’s Bible studies and congregations celebrated Advent, Christmas pageants, Christmas dinners, and candlelight services. In our Christmas Store, we shared Luke 2 in multiple languages, and 1225 people made a spiritual decision of some kind. 317 adults became Christ-followers – a treasure indeed.
We treasure walking this journey with you all year long, but especially at Christmas. We are grateful for you.