Less than 1 hour ago I was in a warehouse with hundreds of people, all volunteers, packing shoeboxes for a program called Operation Christmas Child. While the program itself is more than worth writting an essay about, I was more moved by the sight of all these people of different sizes, shapes, ages, sex, nationalities and race all working together to send a shoebox full of goodies to a child they will never know or see in a land they may never visit. In that I not only believe but am assured that there is hope in America and in the world. There is the hope of the man who spoke almost no english but offered me a piece of candy saying as best he could, “from my country Guatamala” that his work will make a difference in a world torn by poverty, famine, global warming and war. There is the hope of the woman who packed shoeboxes with her children that the time she spent tonite will show them that the greatest gift is that of giving to others. There is the hope of the single mother who removed rubber bands from boxes and sealed them with tape that her child at home with her grandmother may one day find a cure for cancer or alzheimers. And there is my hope as I watch my wife and daughter that we might make a difference in the world, no matter how small. As I think about the tiny shoeboxes that will be distributed all around the globe, I can see the joy and excitement in the eyes of the children who will finally receive them. The children that one day will grow into adults and govern these far off lands and in this I have the hope that they may remember this single act of kindness and it will influence the way they lead their people. I have the hope that one day all of the great leaders of the world may have once received a tiny shoebox and in that they may find they share a common thread. I hear people say that there is hope “for” America and “for” the world, but I have to disagree. I say there is hope “in” America and “in” the world. For it is not in the great deeds of a few but in the smaller deeds of the many that we find hope in ourselves, in others and in our world. And as long as we have hope, I have the feeling that everything will end up being ok.
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