To the editor:
As I write this article, I am anticipating sharing Thanksgiving with my family. We gathered at my sister's, and her husband, Bob, was to be largely responsible for preparing the turkey and all the trimmings.
Following dinner, we shared the fun and laughter that always accompanies the times we are together. For family and sharing time together, I am thankful.
Urban Mission has completed another wonderful Thanksgiving food distribution, having provided more than 1,200 bags of food to more than 1,000 families. With the team effort of staff members and volunteers, this year's distribution was another great event. For a wonderful staff and group of volunteers who continue to say yes, I am thankful.
At the same time the bags of food were being presented to the families in the dock area of our warehouse, I was in my office working on our Christmas programs. Our largest program, Christmas Kids, started out with 428 children to be adopted. Once again, friends of Urban Mission stepped up and helped to get every one of the children adopted.
For friends who follow their hearts to make sure these children have Christmas presents, I am thankful.
Now I am anticipating the days the families will be coming in to pick up the packages for their children. It will be a hectic time for the workers, but watching everything unfold to provide the beauty of Christmas is wonderful. For the families who come to us for assistance, I am thankful.
The last program we do is our Santa's Recycle Shop. So many friends have donated new and gently used toys to be taken upstairs for the shop.
Groups of individuals have helped do the sorting and cleaning and putting these toys in place. The parents coming in to shop are the parents who did not register their children anywhere for Christmas assistance. For parents who did not make any registration, I am thankful.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 reads, "In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."
Melody Beattie writes, "Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend."
It is the second sentence written by Beattie that I connect to. Our distribution has allowed our families to share in that feast. My sister's house was turned into a home as we all gathered as a family.
And many, many strangers became friends to Urban Mission as they provided their help with both holidays. It just doesn't get any better than that, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus.
Thanks to everyone for all that you do, have done and will do to continue to assist Urban Mission in doing God's work. God bless each and every one of you.
Linda L. Smith
Urban Mission Ministries