Samaritan’s Purse, the ministry behind Operation Christmas Child, has seen some incredible examples of God’s work since its beginnings in 1970. Today the evangelical ministry works in more than 100 countries around the world, with its best known program of Operation Christmas Child collecting over 113 million boxes since 1993.
But in all that time, the people at OCC have never seen anything quite so unusual–and amazing–as what happened this year. I won’t recount the whole story, but here’s the outline. It’s not just a heart-warming holiday story. There’s something more here, an real-life example of the kind of thing that happens when generosity meets God’s grace in human lives.
In 2000, Tyrel Wolfe a 7-year-old boy from an Idaho cattle ranch, packed a Christmas box for Operation Christmas Child. His box went to a Vacation Bible School graduation ceremony outside of Manila and into the hands of Joana, a Filipino girl attending the school. Through the gospel presentation in the box, Joana and her father came to Christ. But the story doesn’t end there. Fourteen years later Joana managed to locate Tyrel and one God-thing led to another. They ended up being married last month. They spent their first Christmas, of course, at Samaritan’s Purse International Headquarters in North Carolina. Their story is an amazing example of the amazing directions life takes when we live it in the presence and grace of God.
You can read the full account here