This post is part of my “stories” series. In this series, I share stories of how people live their lives in response to the gospel and as a demonstration of God’s love in order to teach us and to provide an example to provoke us to love and good works. (See “stories: A New Series” for more information about this series.)
This story was sent to me by a reader named Mark. If you would like for me to publish your story of how you or someone else demonstrated God’s love to others, please email them to me. My email address is in the left sidebar of this blog.
Every Christmas, I give a small gift to everyone on Christmas Eve and the kids get new pajamas. I hide the presents and after the Christmas Eve service, I give out clues that lead to each present. In the past, I have just gone out and purchased small, random gifts for this. This past year, I decided to change things up a little bit.
For each adult, I purchased a $5 McDonald’s gift card. Once everyone got their card, I explained that the gift card was given with special rules. I told them that the gift card was not for them. It was for someone who they found to be in need. I encouraged them to carry the card with them and that they would know when they crossed paths with the person who needed it. Once they give the card away, they can call me and I’ll give them another one, or they can buy another one themselves.
One of my Christmas presents for my wife was to a theater show in downtown Jacksonville. When we parked in the garage downtown, a pleasant gentlemen approached us as we were leaving and mentioned the cold weather. We made a little bit of small talk as we walked, and he started to tell us that many people don’t like to give him cash, but some people are willing to buy some food for him and asked if we could help. As was my new custom, I had the McDonald’s card in my pocket. I gave him the card and told him I was happy to help.
He said, “That’s the love of Christ!” and walked away.
I can only hope that this is as contagious to the rest of my family as it was for me!