Viewpoint from Isabel Minister 01/05/09
Park Baptist Church Member
‘Come on, smile, it may never happen!’ I’ve heard and said that so many times, and if you can lend your support to this one, its effects will be global and last the whole year through!
Heard of the shoebox Appeal? Well Smile is one of the organizations that is involved with it, delivering shoeboxes to the needy in Africa, Asia and Europe, aiming to put a smile on people’s faces as they see the love of God in action.
The Shoebox Appeal is not just for Christmas, but work goes on throughout the year to make it the success it is. Groups of supporters in schools, youth clubs, Women’s Institutes, Brownies and Scouts, as well as individuals are today knitting, saving and thinking creatively, to make this year’s Smile appeal, an even bigger success this year.
So what can you do? Look for bargains in the shops that would fit in a shoebox along with other small items. For toys, soft bears, small cars, a yo-yo or small musical instrument. For learning, pens, pencils, notebook, chalk, rubber or pencil sharpener can be added. With hygiene in mind, toothbrush, toothpaste, brush, comb and bar of wrapped soap. Other items can include gloves, hats, scarves, necklaces and small sweets. Bear in mind that those who receive these have often never had a present before and that what seem to be the most ordinary items to us are so so special to those who receive them, the smiles are guaranteed! Many of our big supermarkets and smaller discount stores have bargains that cost pennies, but can make such a difference, to those underprivileged who suffer daily poverty, living as refugees or in war zones.
Shoeboxes can be put together for any age group or sex. They can then be collected by your local Smile coordinator, David Minister. He can be contacted on 07711451020 or 01493 733153 and can provide talks and DVDs explaining the work of Smile. There is also their website http://www.smileinternational.org available for further details. After collection, the boxes are sorted, stacked and taken away in a transit to their destination.
If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.” 1 John 3:17-18
A smile costs nothing but gives much. It enriches those who receive, without making poorer those who give. It takes but a moment, but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever, it is something that cannot be bought, begged, borrowed or stolen, for it is of no value to anyone until it is given away.
If someone is too tired to give you a smile today, give them one of yours, ‘let us love with actions and in truth’ and with a little planning let us help Smile to take it to places it is so rarely seen….