Mailboxes come in all shapes and sizes, yours may be square, brick, metal, plastic, or be more personal and shaped like a fish, tractor, or bare your initials.
But whatever the appearance of the mailbox, they all contain similar items; usually bills, advertisements, and what I refer to as “junk mail”. However every once in a while there will be a surprise awaiting you in the box.
When my husband and I were first starting out as parents, a new job took us 200 miles from our families. Among the bills and junk mail in our new square metal mailbox there would often be a surprise package. These unexpected packages were from my mom and contained clothes, toys, and a variety of other items. We referred to these packages as our “care packages”, an appropriate name since not only did they contain items beneficial to us but they also let us know that someone cared for us and our wellbeing.
A year ago a new job relocated us one thousand miles from our children and grandchildren. Thus instead of being the recipients of the “care packages” we are now the ones who gather the items and send them to our loved ones.
A recent Sunday School lesson revealed how we, like the Israelites, should pass the message of Christ to our children and grandchildren. Hum, fourteen hours away, how does one do that? A few days following the lesson while in the midst of packing a “care package” to the grandchildren, the Lord gave me an idea.
I could write a devotional and to gain the grandchildren’s attention, place a toy with the devotion; one that would motivate them to remember and or understand the devotion. For example, the granddaughters love dolls. I could mail a princess doll with a brief devotion on how as a Christian we are the daughters of the King. The ideas began to flood my mind, plastic stars with the story of how God created the earth and recordable books telling bible stories, and so on, get the idea?
Grandchildren taken care of, but what about the adult children, siblings, and other loved ones in my life? What could be placed in their package? A search of the internet revealed; Christian books, movies, gift cards, mugs with bible verses, etc., lots of items available to remind us of God’s love. To someone unemployed or the family that has had an extended illness; a check or money order will speak volumes of Christ’s love. But wait, these packages take time and postage can become expensive.
Thus, as I was considering the cost of mailing packages and pondering alternative methods to minister another memory came to mind.
Another item we use to receive in the mailbox was letters. My grandmother would write us letters telling us that she was praying for us and encourage us to follow God’s leadership. Hum? letters, when is the last time you received one of those? Good news, they still make stationary and pens. Letters are still a great way to update people on your status, not just how often you go to the bathroom like on some of the social networks, but more importantly, what God is doing in your life. Even note cards which are short versions of letters can be used to let someone know you are praying for them.
Writing letters not your style, there are always cards. They make them for all occasions; birthdays, sympathy, thank you, congratulations, appreciation, encouragement, holidays, and witness cards. Christian bookstores have a wide variety of cards which all include verses from the bible; whether it is to let someone know you sympathize with them over a recent loss of a loved one, or congratulate them on an achievement, marriage, graduation, or birth. Other cards encourage someone when they are going through a sickness, divorce, or any other number of trials. And speaking of encouragement, probably the professionals who need the most encouragement are those in ministry. The bookstores have cards to encourage and thank members of the ministerial staff for their sacrifices also.
Feel lead to witness to someone but are miles away, the bookstores even have cards telling of salvation. These cards are wonderful tools for ministry, inexpensive, and readily available at all Christian bookstores. And who doesn’t feel special when they receive a card in the mail?
Not into snail mail, more tech savvy? Emails are also a way to communicate God’s love to someone, just add a bible verse to the bottom of the email, a note that you are praying for them, or ask them if they would like for you to pray for something specific. Remember the emblem for emails is a letter or mailbox; they are faster, do not require postage, and you don’t even have to walk to the mailbox to send an email.
Emails are great and have vastly reduced the items of mail in your mailbox. However, the next time you retrieve your mail remember that the postal service responsible for putting that mail into your box has for years used the motto: Through rain, sleet, snow… Well our Lord promises to be there 24/7 through all types of weather conditions. And He never fails to deliver.
What about it? Is there someone you know who could use a reminder of God’s love, someone in whom you need to minister, maybe through the mailbox?
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