Gift Wrapping

So many presents to wrap, why not offer to help . . . Free Gift Wrapping

Grace was excited and ready when once again allowed to provide free gift wrapping during the Christmas season at the Valencia Town Center Mall. Read the stories of how this gift to our community blessed both those wrapping and those who brought gifts to be wrapped.


Received Monday 12/14/09
Adrienne Nau
What a neat opportunity to be able to serve the community and to show God’s love through the simplicity of wrapping gifts for Christmas. It’s a real blessing when you see the people’s faces light up as you wrap up their gifts for them with no strings attached. Not only does this reach out to those with time to allow us to share our talents with them, but also to all those passing by and looking over at our tables in curiosity. After praying for those we might reach and then directly being able to participate in the event, I know God worked through all the willing and generous workers to reach into the hearts of the community. Praise be to the Lord.

Received Monday 12/14/09
Becky Pruitt
Well, when my roommate and I signed up to the gift wrapping we thought it would be a blessing to those we ministered too, but indeed we were blessed also. We had a great time selling "FREE" gift wrapping. We would hear, "what's the catch?" When we would reply, "no catch just a small way of sharing God's love with you." They would smile and gladly accept. We had one lady ask if she could have her husband get the toys out of the car that they had purchased elsewhere, and we were happy to do it, giving them the afternoon to spend together. We had another girl not sure of where she would find her new home church since moving from the east coast. After telling her about AWANA for her kids, I won't be surprise to see her soon. A young college boy was excited to hear about the Skate ministry. My friend Anne Amling did a lot of the wrapping while I was able to tell them about our God gifted choir, and orchestra, then inviting them to the Christmas Concert. Again, it was a blessing to be able to do such a small piece of God's work.

Received Monday 12/14/09
Steve Kilker
On Saturday December 5th we met a lady in her sixties who was astonished that we would wrap presents for free. She pondered the implications for a while and then sheepishly inquired if she could go home and return with all of her Christmas presents. We explained to her that not only would that be alright with us but that we would meet her in the parking lot and help her carry all her gifts to our wrapping center! She departed vowing to return. Return she did! On Sunday she arrived at our Patios Wrapping Center with a special cart that doubles as a walker loaded with 20+ gifts of all sizes. She explained tearfully that chronic back pain made standing or sitting in one place for very long a very painful experience for her. Our gift of free wrapping allowed her to find the joy in giving instead of dreading the agony that wrapping would bring. She was also excited about our Christmas Concerts and took 12 tickets to "treat her family". She handed me a check to defray in part the expense of the gift wrapping. Her kind offer was gently declined. That lead to a brief conversation of why we do these sorts of things. That indeed our small service is a picture of God's grace;that there are some things we can obtain but cannot earn. Our time together ended as Jonathan one of our young volunteers assisted this beaming lady to her car. Thanks to all who made this act of kindness possible. We will be back at the Mall this weekend. Come and look for us near Penny's 2nd floor and out in the Patios near our Nativity Scene.

Received Tuesday 12/9/09
Robyn McRee
When I heard about the gift-wrapping opportunity two Sundays ago, I knew I had to sign up! Rather than dread gift-wrapping, I actually look FORWARD to it. I had visions of artistic masterpieces in my head when I showed up to volunteer for the gift-wrapping experience at the mall this past Sunday. But I soon realized that 1) the people we are serving really aren't looking for masterpieces -- they're looking for a reprieve from an overwhelming task; and 2) the experience is much more powerful in the minds and hearts of those people than we gift-wrappers could have ever imagined. My partner and I were blessed to meet a woman who already felt so defeated by the holiday, she couldn't even decide how to divvy up her fiance's gifts between Christmas and his birthday. As we wrapped her gifts, she shared with us the struggles she and her fiance were suffering through because of their families' rejection of their relationship. Before she left, I shared with her my own struggles in seeking out a church where I truly felt loved and accepted, and how GBC has felt like "home" since the first service I attended. I encouraged her to come to the Candlelight Concert, and before she left, this once-dejected Jewish woman smiled, hugged me, and asked me if I had put some information about our church in the bag with her wrapped packages. I assured her I did and told her I looked forward to seeing her on Friday at the concert. I can't wait to go "wrap presents" again -- and unwrap all of the surprises God has in store for us!! :o)

Received Tuesday 12/8/09
Laura Wingenroth
It was a wonderful and heartwarming experience to be able to share my gift wrapping "talents" at the mall. I was so encouraged by the smiling faces when people realized we were "serious!" about the gift-wrapping being free! It was a pleasure to take some of the stress out of the holidays for folks by providing this simple yet so appreciated service. One man was so excited to have me wrap all the gifts he had purchased for his wife, he said he couldn't have asked for anything better. :) I encourage all out there to give it a try, for all the blessings you receive from such a simple act of kindness.

Received Tuesday 12/8/09

Kathleen Summer
I just wanted you to know how much fun it was to be a part of the free gift wrapping experience at the mall. It was really a blessing to be a part of it. My son Jonathan said it was fun when he overheard a little girl asking her mom if she could have her gift wrapped and her mother said no that it was probably $5 – and Jonathan was able to tell them it was free. Also, it was nice for me as a mom to see Jonathan “selling” (the tickets are free) 6 tickets to our Friday Christmas performance. The gentleman was very interested after Jonathan shared how great our concerts are. Jonathan said he is going to look for him at the concert on Friday. I look forward to helping out with it next year. Thank you!