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Outside the wire, Jonathan has a little girl and boy whom he thinks about often.  He does everything he can to keep in touch with them.  So, Jonathan writes to nine-year-old Julie and six-year-old Jacob.  ‘They are very young, but I still write them because I love them.  They know I love them, and they love me.’

“Julie and Jacob don’t remember their father outside the prison bars.  But, they still know that he loves them and cares about them thanks to the ministry made possible through Angel Tree.

“When caring Christians visited Jonathan’s children at Christmas, Julie’s brown eyes widened when she saw the present bearing the angel-shaped tag on the box.

“She tore through the wrapping paper to find brand-new clothes.  Jacob received sporting goods.  ‘My daddy gave me this!  I got this from my daddy!’ they exclaimed.

Yes, I know these paragraphs were read by many people, and I was just one of them.  I don’t expect to ever meet Julie, Jacob, or their father Jonathan.  But, it doesn’t matter that they don’t know me personally.

It is true that I don’t know if what I read has left out some details for effect.  But, it doesn’t matter and it doesn’t change the main point.

What matters is that I had the opportunity to hurt with the hurting, to laugh with the laughing, and do something about the pain of a prisoner and his two little children.  God wants his people to do things like that.  And, if I can do it, why not?   When next Christmas comes around, I will do it again, with much pleasure. I hope even more will take part and experience the joy of bringing smiles to those who directly (Jonathan) or indirectly (Julie and Jacob) are living the consequences of behavior that God has now forgiven in Jesus.