“For there will never cease to be poor people in the land; that is why I am commanding you, open your hand willingly to your poor and needy brother in your land.” Deuteronomy 15:11 CSB
Blake Mycoskie took a trip to Argentina in 2006 that changed his life forever. He learned, while traveling through the country the importance of shoes for children. He saw the hardships of life without shoes. There are 7 billion people on the planet, and 1 billion of them do not have shoes. In some countries, this means children can’t attend school, the risk of spreading or catching a disease from their foot sores prohibits them attending. When Blake saw this first hand, he decided to do something about it. He developed TOMS shoes, a company that donates one pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair that is purchased. At this point in time they have donated over 60 million pairs of shoes to children in 70 countries. From one simple idea, they now provide eye care and glasses, clean water and training for birth attendants with birthing kits. All because one man saw a need and decided to do something about it.
Jesus tells us, the poor will always be with us (John 12:8 NIV). Because there will always be poor among us, we will always have the opportunity to be generous, to help them with their needs. When Jesus says this, He’s referring to the verse above. We are to open our hands and give what we have, which doesn’t necessarily mean money. We also don’t have to start a company to help those in need, although feel free too if God leads you in that direction. We can just as easily clean out our closets and donate to a worthy cause. My favorite place to donate is the women’s shelters in our area for women getting out of abusive relationships. There are so many organizations that cherish your support. I love to crochet hats and scarves for one of the homeless organizations nearby. Every fall, I donate jackets and blankets, the thought of people freezing in our country makes my heart ache. Another way to donate is to local food banks that provide meals. My tennis partner volunteers for a church that provides meals and clothing for those in need. She is always asking for shoes, that is the primary need they have, especially men’s shoes.
While researching for this devotional I came across Blue Jeans Go Green. They recycle your old denim and turn it into insulation for houses. They have diverted over 1,230 tons of denim from landfills, collected 2,500,000 plus pieces of denim and made over 4,830,000 square feet of insulation from them. One more way to donate old clothing for a good cause. Whatever you decide to do, give with a generous heart, knowing you are helping someone else have a better life. They may be an old pair of shoes to you, but to someone else, they are a gift from heaven for their feet.