Impacting the World Or Shoes for Sale


As I pull the boxes from under my bed dust settles on my hands and face. I blink and sneeze again, pushing away the annoyance to dig through a box of shoes for the pair I’ve been thinking about. I’m getting ready to teach at a women’s conference and my cowboy boots just won’t do.

Where are those cute cream flats?

cream colored shoes

My class is on living frugally. And I have to confess to the class my struggle between God’s call to live generously and my need to salvage, repurpose and save everything.

I’ve got a bag full of holey socks to show the class how to upcycle and make dryer balls to cut the time and reduce electricity use.

Ah ha!

I find the pair of shoes I wanted and shove the box back into the recesses of my under bed-closet for another day, probably in a year.

My co-teacher and I discuss the challenges of living on a food budget of $400, then I open another email…


In another city a mother of eleven smiles timidly from my computer screen. She’s joined by her daughter Sara. Two beautiful women, also struggling to find perspective in their taxing lives.

Read Melissa’s original post “Every Mother is Important” here.

But these two know nothing of dusty boxes full of unused shoes.

This beautiful woman, wrapped in a shawl, with her arm around her young daughter doesn’t worry about the food budget or teaching classes or upcycling used clothing. This woman is wearing all that she owns and it doesn’t include a single pair of shoes.

Adise and Sarah

Click picture to read more about this family.

She makes beautiful, handwoven baskets. A talented and diligent worker. She sits and weaves, maybe shoe’s her barefoot children outside to play when the come to her, eyes pleading, for a morsel of food. The basket, the straw and the work of her hands is her only hope.

“Shhh, I must weave. One more day until I can sell it and purchase some Teff to make Injera.”

The basket she’s worked two days on sells for $1.15

This family being recommended by her pastor for sponsorship through the Adoption Ministry 1:27.

It costs $40 to sponsor this family.

Can I make a difference? Can you?


I lay awake last night thinking about this family and my stupid box of shoes, thankful the the Lord has opened my eyes to see as He does but struggling over how to help. God doesn’t asks us to change everything but to be obedient to impact the ones He puts in front of us. I wonder how I’ll be used to impact this sweet family.

Does anyone want to buy some shoes?

*Update 5/21/2012*
Yay, this family has been sponsored!

Double dog dare you to write on Perspective!
Five Minute Friday
The Gypsy Mama

8 thoughts on “Impacting the World Or Shoes for Sale”

  1. Oh, my friend. I know this feeling! After going to Ethiopia in 09 and seeing real need, true poverty, uninhibited joy and deep faith, I like you, flail in my inner conflict. I wrestle with my excess, but moan when the half-n-half is gone (for I must have it with my coffee!) Thank you for posting this link, this story and this opportunity.

  2. Cute shoes! Beautiful picture of mother and daughter. I sponsored a child through World Vision several years ago – it was the most humbling experience ever. It reminded me how I take so many things for granted and that I really do have a great life and nothing to complain about.

    I’m looking forward to finding out how God is going to use you to help this family :-)

    1. Ugh, I DO take so much for granted. Glad someone else can relate. I’m excited to see how God provides too!

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