A teenaged boy, Sampil has been impacted in a great way after he received an Operation Christmas Child shoebox gift in the country of Mongolia.
Sampil used to be a homebody, but now he freely goes about the city of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. He now trains on team sports and has made many friends, which is in stark contrast to what he used to be before.
He had finished his education at the primary school level, but after a five-year break from his studies, he has recently graduated from high school.
Sampil was supposed to attend an Operation Christmas Child outreach event for disabled children in March 2015, but as he was critically ill that day, he could not make it. He has Cerebral palsy which means that he has a weakened immune system, and he cannot even do ordinary things for himself.
So when an Operation Christmas Child volunteer named Chuka Bayaraa heard of Sampil, and visited his home, and told him and his family ab out Christ and how he died for our sins, only Sampil repsonded to the call and gave his life to Christ that day.
To Sampil’s surprise, Chuka gifted him with a shoebox filled with a towel, toothbrush, and notebooks.
“The notebooks really encouraged me to go back to school and study,” Sampil said. His heart has been totally transformed by what happened.
Chuka saw the changes happening in Sampil’s life and said “He became a very happy boy. He enjoyed going to school and being with his friends. He had a very low self-esteem, but after he became a Christian his understanding of himself changed.”
“After I got a shoebox, I became a Christian and my relationships with others changed,” Sampil said.
Sampil explained: “Before, I didn’t like children who are handicapped because they were just like me.”
Sampil stopped being self-conscious, and instead began volunteering as an assistant teacher at a Christian camp for disabled children. He is now responsible for caring for 16- and 17-year-old students who attend and leads them to Christ, his new source of hope.
“Jesus gave me a love and a heart to talk to [the] children,” Sampil said.
Sampil’s hunger for the Lord has led him to spend time Chuka reading and understanding the word.
“We pray together and study the Bible,” Chuka said. During this time, they discuss about Sampil’s future, and Chuka shares his burdens with him as well.
During one such session, they discussed the topic of forgiveness, and Chuka learned that Sampil’s father left the family when he was young. So, as a result, Sampil carried a deep seated hatred in his heart toward his father.
He was somewhat experiencing a father’s love through a step-dad who loved him, but was unforgiving to his biological dad. But as Sampil served at the Christian camp this past summer, he made the choice to forgive his father.
While working at the camp and increasing the network of his friends, Sampil becoming a better athlete. He has joined a club that competed with Special Olympics East Asia and travelled with them to China.
There he has had the time of his life, experiencing a train ride and exposure to a country other than his own. As he grows in faith and maturity, his witness shines brightly even beyond his family and peers.
“Parents see Sampil in the community and it gives them hope that their children can grow socially, emotionally, and physically,” Chuka said.
Sampil never imagined that he could become a Special Olympic medallist, but his teams walked away with a silver in both soccer and bocci ball.
Sampil’s focus is ever steady “My dream is to be a teacher like Brother Chuka,” he said. “I want to share the Gospel with children.”
It is so important that we pray for the boys and girls all over the world receiving the Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, that God will use these little boxes powerfully in their lives just like He did in Sampil’s case.