Christmas Store Recap

I began working on our annual Christmas store this past September, in partnership with Rosewood Church. The Christmas store provides a way for less fortunate families to purchase Christmas gifts for their children. I held 5 neighborhood meetings in which I informed people of how one would go about registering, registered families, and provided them with final details for our Christmas store.

The concept of the Christmas store is beautiful; fortunate Bellflower residents donate gifts to our store; we price the donated gifts at a very low price (over 90% reduction). We then invite our registered neighbors to Christmas shop for their kids. For many of the families the gifts they purchased at our store will be all they can offer their kids. What’s so cool is that they parents are able to stand proud, knowing that what little they could present to their kids THEY purchased with their hard earned money.

I was a very busy, popular guy at our Kingdom Causes office! Every day I received calls regarding the Christmas store. I was beginning to feel overwhelmed with all the various phone calls, until I received a phone call that would encourage and motivate me to continue working hard.

“Hi I was told to call this number and ask for Edgar,” she said. “I was told there was a Christmas store and I was wondering if I could still register my three kids.” I was sad to inform the lady that the registration deadline had long past, but she was more than welcome to show up at the end and if we had any left over toys she would be more than welcome to purchase toys for her children. My answer seemed to carry the weight of gold, she was so thankful and excited at the possibility that she’d be able to shop for her kids.

I provided her with all the information needed. “Just to let you know we began registering people for our Christmas store in November,” I told her. “Those pre-registered are able to shop first before those that weren’t registered on time. I suggest next year you register early that way you’re guaranteed toys for your kids.”

“Thanks but we normally don’t do this, it’s just that my husband recently lost his job and if wasn’t for this we wouldn’t be able to give our kids anything for Christmas. Thank you so much, you don’t know how much this means to my husband and I.”

What a difference was being made in the lives of this and many families, I only wish I could catch a glimpse of the feelings and emotions that were going on in the hearts of the parents. What an awesome event to share in the restoration of our neighbor’s dignity! From the bottom of my heart I want to thank all those who donated toys and/or their time in making this event possible.

-Edgar Guzman, KCB Community Development Intern

(picture is of volunteer Christina McConnell of Child Evangelism Fellowship and the Bellflower Chamber of Commerce)

“…You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” – Mark 12:31