Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Sparkle Box - Our New Christmas Tradition

A few Sundays ago our pastor (thank you Pastor Doug!) introduced us to a new book, The Sparkle Box: A Gift with the Power to Change Christmas by Jill Hardie. During Sunday School, the children made their very own Sparkle Box. The idea is that we keep an eye on the good things they do for others, write those things down and place them in their Sparkle Box. Those boxes, full of wonderful acts of service and kindness to others, are their special gifts to Jesus. In Matthew 25:40 Jesus tells us, "whatever you did for one of the least of these... you did for me."

I love the idea of writing down sweet, kind actions and thoughts- whether intentional or not and offering these, as the gifts they are, to Jesus on His birthday. What a great way to showcase the good our children do, to reinforce that this is one way to honor Him with their very own special and unique gifts.

We bought our family a copy of The Sparkle Box, and in the very back is an envelope that includes a Sparkle Box that just needs to be folded to assemble. Daddy and I are sharing that Sparkle Box, the one on the far right. (The kids love The Sparkle Box story. We read it a few times a week.)

Here's an idea of what's inside our Sparkle Boxes: All of ours include a day of service at a school for children with special needs. Our children worked very hard cleaning that day along with a handful of other adults from our life group at church. We all helped scrub this school from top to bottom!  Our children were so happy to know they were serving the children and teachers by helping them have a beautifully clean school.




We decided as a family to sponsor a World Vision child, we filled shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child, the children have asked for chores they can do to raise money for children in Haiti and to support an Awana group in Nepal.

We've paid special attention to the sweet things they do for one another, like fill a near empty glass-even the little guy can use the water dispenser from the fridge, clear the table for another, open a door for a stranger, listen to Mommy and Daddy, taken turns nicely, offer the last piece of candy or a portion of a special treat to their siblings, stop whatever they are doing when a prayer request is heard and pray right then, pray for someone when they feel the need in their heart. This is just a sampling of the kind things that are already in their gift boxes for Jesus. A practice that should continue throughout the year.

It's nice to intentionally focus on the good, the kind, the helpful. You look at these little things and  I hope it's obvious ~ even a little child can make a positive difference in the life of someone else. I think that is an important reminder for every child and person to know. I believe the idea for the Sparkle Box is far more than casting a shadow on commercialism - it's about tangibly showing how helping and loving others is a very noble and worthy calling.

~ Hope

Disclaimer: We bought our copy of The Sparkle Box, and I just wanted to share our experience with you. This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclaimer page.

41 comments:

  1. HI Hope,

    Thank you for your beautiful blog. I loved reading how your family is using The Sparkle Box tradition this Christmas. It is inspiring! I invite you to share your ideas on TheSparkleBox.com to help inspire even more people!

    Blessings and a Merry Christmas!

    Jill

    ReplyDelete
  2. This looks great, Hope. I'm going to look into it!

    ReplyDelete
  3. What a wonderful idea! I need to do this next year!

    Stopping by from the Crew!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love the idea of a sparkle box! Thanks for the great idea! A couple of years ago we started this tradition: http://sarahsjoys.com/2011/11/15/a-christmas-tradition/ Our girls are already excited for it for this coming Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Too cool! I was searching The Sparkle Box and came upon your review, clicked on it, and it happens to be my sister's review! We are going to do it this year! Thanks for the suggestion last year! Love you :)

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