How many gifts does Santa's bag carry?

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Good question…and I don’t know the answer.

But I do know a few other things. I know Santa must be able to carry a lot to bring smiles to the faces on every boy and girl on the planet.

I also know that while Santa has a round belly, rosy red cheeks, a big white beard and a jolly laugh, he also has lots of helpers. Some calls them elves. I call them saints.

I am writing this somewhere over the African continent, two hours from our destination in Entebbe, Uganda. In the cargo hold of this airplane are three duffel bags, each weighing about 50 pounds. Inside those bags are gifts of every variety for our friends at Hines Ugandan Ministries. There are clothes, toys, soccer balls, a Jenga game or two, a few baby dolls, books, art sets and much more. Oh, and somehow, there’s dryer in there…not for hair, but for clothes. (OK, so we didn’t really carry a clothes dryer halfway across the world; but we did bring enough money to buy one for Momma Katherine’s home.)

But enough about that, I was talking about the elves.

Over the last three weeks, our church in Tallahassee, City Church, has been engaged in a Kids for the City gift drive for Uganda, the Tallahassee campus of the Florida Baptist Children’s Homes and refugee families in our church. This was the brainchild of our kids a couple of years ago and the second year we’ve collected such gifts.

This year, Christmas will be made possible for Ugandan children, foster kids and orphans in Tallahassee and many from other countries who have recently made north Florida their home.

That notion makes me smile. I smile because more than 200 people from our church gave so freely and generously. I smile because friends, family and church members donated more than $4,500 to help meet needs at the Hines Uganda Ministries. And I smile because I now know the answer to my question.

How many gifts does Santa’s bag carry?

As many as it needs to.

And while Santa’s sleigh on this trip may be a Boeing 777, powered not by reindeer, but by jet engines, he does whatever it takes, uses whatever elves he needs, to get those gifts to all four corners of the globe.

Merry Christmas everyone. And the next time you see Santa or one of those elves, tell him THANK YOU!

Swimming in His grace,


P.S. If you want to be an elf too, click here to donate to Orphan’s Heart, the ministry who is coordinating this trip and does amazing work with 14 partners around the world. (Be sure to put “HUM Christmas” in the GIFT NOTES.