Well, let me tell you how good God is.
A few days ago both my sister and I posted pleas on our blogs for help with my church's Angel Tree. We were having trouble making sure all the names got taken off the tree, and it wasn't due to people not wanting to pick a name, it is just because of the hard time people are having financially right now. And trust me, I know all about that, so I didn't want anyone to feel bad for not being able to take a name.
Just a side note - I don't know who gets names off the tree and who doesn't anyway, so I'm not keeping tabs, just for future reference!
Anyway, I had a friend who told me they wanted to donate some money for the Angel Tree. I was excited because I was thinking this was probably going to be a large check - my guess was $100. (To me, that's a large check!!)
Our church treasurer came up to me after church last night and said, "Hey, somebody made a donation to Fed By Faith." She was grinning like crazy but I just said, "Okay, great!" She kept grinning and said, "Do you want to sit down?" That's when I realized this was going to be a larger amount of money than I had thought. I'll be honest, my first thought was, "This is going to be a $500 check."
She looked me in the eyes and said, "One thousand dollars."
Do you even have any idea what $1,000 will do for these kids? At this point, my family (in-laws of my sister are included in that) and my sister's book club have stepped up tremendously, along with other people at church chipping in to donate toys, and The Classy Paci donating a large amount of toys, and we were down to about 40 children left on the tree.
One issue we were having this year is that so many kids asked for video games, mainly Wii games. I was thinking about just going to Gamestop and buying some of the used games just so they'd get at least something.
Until last night, at church, when someone showed up with a big bag of Wii games they wanted to donate.
See, I'll admit I was starting to get a little worried about the Angel Tree. My husband and my best friend are both pessimists so between the two of them I was starting to think, "What in the world are we going to do if we can't do this?" When really, I should have realized, we can't do this. If we depend on ourselves, honestly, we can't do anything of substance. I talked to Cindy (pessimist friend) last Sunday after Stephen (pessimist husband) urged me to find out what would happen if we couldn't help all the kids on the tree. He wants to have a plan for everything! But after I talked to her I just couldn't get in the "spirit" of worrying. I just knew that if we were doing this for the right reasons (to give kids Christmas, to show people that God will provide for them) that God would work this out somehow. I've always been way too optimistic, just like my dad, but hey, it's worked for me so far!
So last night, at church, when I saw the stack of Wii games, I was giddy and I was so happy... but I have to admit I wasn't totally shocked. And when I was told about the $1000 donation, I was blown away by the generosity, but I wasn't totally shocked. I knew God was going to make this happen, as long as we make sure we don't make it about us.
I know people are going to say that the Angel Tree is happening because of people. People are buying the presents. People are donating cash. But tell me - who do you think gives people that spirit of giving and generosity? People in general are not good. People in general will run you over to get a leg up in the world and not think twice about it. Luke 18:19 in the Bible actually shows Jesus saying, "Why do you call me good? No one is good, except for God." (my paraphrase).
So today, I am telling you, the only way we are able to do this Angel Tree (or anything good) is because of God. So please thank God today for the generosity of people. For giving us hearts that want to help others. For giving people financial blessings so they can bless others. Because it all comes from Him.