Living, Learning & Loving La Vida Nueva

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Bare Feet

When was the last time you thanked the Lord as you put on your shoes?
I don't recall ever doing this.

I've never seen anything like it; Women, children, toddlers walk around with bare feet without even looking down to check for rocks or thorns.  It is easy to imagine what feet that endure the earths terrain without protection look like: dirty, cut, deeply wounded.  My heart is heavy at the thought of soft, sweet toddler feet having to bleed and hurt as they form callouses to bear the rough land they must tread shoeless.

Food on the table and clean water to drink are necessities; shoes are a luxury.

"The King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me." Matthew 25:40 ESV

I am so thankful that I was able to be a part of this blessing.  A dear family from the States, after hearing of this village, led by the grace of God, offered to pay for new shoes for whomever needed them.

The next time we were at the village, we had all the children get "sized" for their new shoes by drawing pictures of their feet on coloring sheets and their names were written inside the silhouettes.  Many of the pages held the dirty prints of the feet we traced.

A little over a week ago, with sizes in hand, we went for a little jog down to the border of Mexico and Belize to look at shoes.  We set out to find imitation Crocs, as we thought they would be the most durable and practical.  After a little searching, we found a store which had the shoes we were looking for ranging from 20-28 pesos per pair, depending on the size.  That boils down to about $1.50 to $2 each.  We dug through boxes of shoes to find reasonable sizes to fit each foot.  We did our best to ensure that girls would recieve pink or white and boys would get blue or black.

We sized up the shoes by comparing them to the drawings we had.  Needless to say, we got quite a few funny looks....Some Mexicans and and two Americans searching through boxes for over 50 pairs of the same shoes, sizing them using torn-out Bible story coloring sheets.


Saturday we loaded up the vans as usual, only this time we had bags full of new shoes for some soon-to-be very happy children!  After Bible study and lunch, Jonathan and I got the privilege of handing out all the shoes.

"Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.' " Matthew 19:14 ESV

The boys were a bit bashful about taking a picture with me.  So, J stepped in and saved the day.

I got choked up giving the shoes to the girl farthest on the right in the white shirt.  She had not been there the week we took the sizes for shoes, and was the only one in the room who wasn't recieving a pair.  I'm not sure what all happened, but Devora decided to give her an extra pair we had, I suppose for someone who didn't show up.  I don't know if it was because of relief that she would, too, get new shoes, or because her demeanor reminded me a lot of my sister, Holly.  Whatever the cause, I had to fight hard to keep tears back then, as do I now while I write this...

We definitely plan on taking sizes again soon for those who were unable to come the week we did the sizes before.  I cannot bear the thought of most - but not all - of those precious children recieving shoes.  We may not go back to Belize, but we'll find them some around here.

'Break my heart from what breaks yours,

Everything I am for your kingdom's cause.' - Hillsong

'Thank you, Jesus.' -Abby


  1. Beautiful are feet that carry the good news! And new shoes! I love you!

  2. This is so wonderful Abby. Look forward to the rest of your posts.
    Love love love love love

  3. Love it Abs! Cant wait to be a part of all this! :)

    I love you!