By The Numbers: Guest Post by Amy!

Have you received your Samaritan’s Purse catalog?  Every year, we encourage the boys to give something, anything, to Jesus.  They gather what little they have and search the pages for what they can buy.  Usually a chicken, a Bible, sports balls, and a mosquito net are our gifts to the King.  See what one determined little lady from our church did last year.  I still get teary when I read her mama’s story.  Beautiful.  I pray this encourages you to help your children give beyond what they think is possible.  See Amy’s first guest post here.  xo Kell

One first grader and her preschool brother.

One milk jug filled with coins and bills.

Several, several, several dozen cookies.

One very sticky kitchen floor.

One dairy cow, ten ducks, four chickens, one rabbit.

There are a few ways to describe my daughter Rebekah. Strong-willed is the first word that usually comes to my mind. Positively, I say she is determined, sincere, passionate. And once an idea is in her head, it is stuck. But when she came to me with an open World Vision gift catalog and a desire to purchase farm animals, I wondered just where she would go with this. So far removed from a world where hunger and need are daily struggles, would she forget all about this in a few weeks, months? Would this be an idea that stuck, or one that was discarded like a forgotten toy?

A cow. A cow and thirteen small farm animals. That meant $601.

She gave first. Rebekah emptied out her piggy bank of all the spare change and tooth fairy money she had. Little brother Benjamin, age four, did the same. They counted and wrote down their total on a lap-sized white board. And the first coins hit the bottom of an empty milk jug.

She made a plan. Who would she ask for donations? What extra chores could she do? What could she sell to raise money? Armed with a couple of recipes and the cutest cow cookie cutter available, we made batch after batch after batch of cookie dough. Vanilla cookies with black and white icing—the “Eat More Cookies” version. And a chocolate-espresso cookie with brown icing we called “How Now Brown Cow.” Full of butter and love, they were a hit with friends from church and school who bought her cookies and donated to her cause. Best of all, though, were the notes, cards, and words of encouragement from adults.

 She worked. At every opportunity, Rebekah worked for extra money. Cleaning baseboards was a favorite chore of hers. She helped hand scrub the kitchen tile (after all that icing, it needed it!) and clean out the minivan. And at her side was Benjamin, asking what he could do too.

She spurred others to good deeds. One afternoon, a friend of mine brought Rebekah home from a play date. The mom handed me a handful of coins and a crumpled bill. After hearing Rebekah tell about wanting to buy a cow, her friend gave, too.

Every coin found under a seat cushion, every bit of change from a purchase, every inch of dirty grout cleaned—it all went to buy a cow.

Come December, when the gift catalog came in the mail again, Rebekah studied it carefully. She didn’t have all she needed. Taking her into his lap, Daddy asked her what she wanted to give. A cow. It was always to be a cow. And thirteen small farm animals. And Ben wants two more chickens. Daddy told her to bring him what she had. She did. He said, “I’ll cover the rest.”

He makes it enough.

One dairy cow, ten ducks, four chickens, one rabbit.

Bellies filled and lives touched. Including one very determined first grader—and her momma.

Resources: World Vision From sponsoring a child to providing a clean water, there are so many ways to give through World Vision, which has been tackling poverty and injustice since 1950.

Samaritan’s Purse Founded by Franklin Graham, Samaritan’s Purse seeks to meet physical and spiritual needs across the United States and around the world through many projects community development, disaster relief, education and vocational training—all while spreading the good news of Jesus Christ. One of our family’s favorite ways to give is through Operation Christmas Child.

One Response to “By The Numbers: Guest Post by Amy!”
  1. cheryl says:

    tear. tear. that was beautiful. encouraged. thank you!

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