The Extraordinary Purpose of a Box


If you follow the Facebook page, you know I took a trip to Orange County. Not to visit Laguna Beach and try to be on that teeny bopper reality show (that I may or may not have watched). Or, to even hang with the Orange County Housewives either.

I've been packing boxes!

This year, Operation Christmas Child invited a few great bloggers to help promote the shoebox packing season. You have seen several posts from me on Operation Christmas Child this year, but it's something I share every year so to get involved in this capacity was truly an honor! I'm hoping there are a few new people that gave a box because they've read about our shoe box stories from years past.

It was nice that we could visit a processing center to see how things work behind the scenes. And by work, I really mean work!


We were on an assembly line sorting through the boxes that your very hands may have packed! Each box has to have the contents sorted to ensure that the liquids, food and other items not appropriate are actually not in there before they are shipped away. My first role was the scanner (thanks to Sarah for the pic!).

So, if you are on the West Coast and did EZ Pay to track your boxes final destination, I'm one (of many) who scanned your box and put it in the big box for shipping. Just don't blame me if it got lost because Amanda and I swapped positions on our line, so it was probably her that messed up the scanning :)

The second position I took over was a sorter. When we went through training (yeap, we had a 10-minute training session before we touched the boxes), and I thought this would be mindless work, honestly. It totally wasn't. Again, I was kind of joking at Amanda about doing this role and seeing her getting emotional over sorting through the items. Of course, when you joke with someone it comes back on you because I found myself getting emotional as I saw the handmade hats and seeing cards and letters for the kids.

This box has the potential to change a little life!! That's HUGE right there!

We toured the processing center and loved the little stations, especially the repair station. I also got a huge sense of how Samaritan's Purse truly means business when they say they love Jesus! I didn't doubt that at all but to see devotional areas set aside for the staff and a prayer area where people can pray anytime was amazing.


During processing, everyone stops for corporate prayer time. Jesus will not only make it in the boxes when they leave your hands, but He will make a special appearance at the processing center when your box is touched by another.

For me, it's encouraging thing to know that an organization that our family has supported for years, continues to pray over the gifts we give. Samaritan's Purse truly knows that to achieve extraordinary goals, like the shipping of 8 million boxes last year, is nothing that we can do alone. This mission of Operation Christmas Child is annointed by God. It teaches that the “Greatest Gift of All” isn't the present they received, but the life they will live anew through knowing and accepting Christ. The mission allows our children be a witness to another child thousands of miles away by sharing their love of Jesus.

If you are reading this and inspired to get involved, you still can!! Operation Christmas Child has created Build A Box. You can go online and build your box virtually, pay and still have the opportunity to change a life! I think this is the coolest thing and it's something you can do with your kiddos too!


Packing a box is an extraordinary act done by ordinary people like you and me. We are fishers of men. Our kids are being little fishers of little boys and girls. Neither of us will likely see the lives changed, but I gotta believe we will in Heaven. Maybe there will be boxes stacked up just like this?


With fellow processors: Sarah, Chris, Amanda, Tricia, Moi, Jessica, Stacey
MIA is Claire who is about to pop out a baby :)

Disclaimer: Samaritan's Purse paid for the accommodations during this trip. See my Disclaimer Policy for additional information.

by Savings Lifestyle: Andrea on December 07, 2010


  • oh amanda - December 07, 2010 @ 1:30 pm

    Awesome post, Andrea. It is still surprising how emotional sorting thru those boxes was. So glad I got to be there with you!

    Also. For the record, I hardly made any scanning mistakes!

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