I’m wiggling my toes to warm up for today’s organization that moves me to live outside myself.
Soles for Jesus is a non-profit established by a woman who took a mission trip to Ethiopia and left with a Ethiopia with a profound mission herself: to put shoes on the soles of the children’s feet.
Sage is the only one in our family with pretty feet. Pretty but not perfect. Even today our little one from another land bears burns and scars from early years without shoes.
How many others like her? There are more than 100,000 street children in the capital city of Ethiopia alone. 100,000.
When we traveled to Addis, you can’t help but be awestruck by the sheer determination required to to travel by foot. Sidewalks are sketchy — many reduced to piles of rubble and puddles of water during the rainy season. Shoes sold at vendors across the city and countryside are the neon sisters to our fat-strapped-rubber-sandals here in the states. Flimsy. Rocks slide in, heels slide off. Very little protection is offered in a landscape where construction appears never-ending and ever few hundred feet foot traffic is forced to the streets with goats, diesel vans, and zero road rules.
If I learned one thing while in Ethiopia it is this: they take immense joy in seeing their children loved and cared for. Would you consider partnering with Soles for Jesus and organize a shoe drive for the children of Ethiopia?
2. Pick a day to have a Barefoot Sunday. We are using it as our kick-off to our month long shoe-raiser.
3. Collect new or gently used shoes size Toddler to 9/adult. Also, collect $1/pair to get them across the Atlantic and into Africa.
4. Send those shoes to Jen at Soles for Jesus in Wisconsin. (She’ll tell you all that in her email.)
5. Come back and keep using our latitude and longitude as the hands that dip in the pockets of Jesus — rattle some change, change a life.
And #6: You could donate to our shoe-raiser. Our seven kids at church have decided to raise 401 pairs of shoes (and the $401 dollars to send them).
In the spirit of all this barefootedness: Toms is having a barefoot day on April 5, called One Day Without Shoes, to raise awareness of what it’s like to go without shoes.
Go ahead…throw a pebble, make a ripple. Let us work together to live larger than ourselves.