Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A Rewarding Shopping Trip

Anymore, I don't really enjoy shopping.  My trips are true, purposeful speed shopping.  I am in and out as quickly as possible.  Today was different.  Today I helped provide the opportunity for others to shop for items they needed.  It wasn't about me at all.

A simple home was transformed into a store where families could come choose from all of the clothing, school, household, and shoe donations for items that they needed.  We sorted the items into departments--boys, girls, shoes, etc. so they could easily choose.  Once everything was arranged throughout the house, it looked like an abundance.  There were easily 100 pairs of shoes in varying styles and sizes, not to mention a full assortment of childrens' clothing.

I was overwhelmed by the thought of managing the people as they came through.  I didn't know how to fairly distribute the items so that as many people as possible would be helped.  Fortunately, the owner of the home took control.  She had a few rules and several friends who helped facilitate the shopping.  Her rules were simple:  1. Everyone got either one outfit or one pair of shoes per child.  2. The children could also have some school supplies, new underwear, or a book bag.  3.  Each child received a new toothbrush, toothpaste, and soap.  4.  Only those who were present could receive items.  They couldn't get items for some cousin, relative, or friend who wasn't there.  5.  The shoes had to fit the children currently, no ideas about reselling them.  6.  If you had helped, you got to go first.  If not, you waited in the line.

This was the remainder of the line when we left.
One outfit or one pair of shoes doesn't seem like much but the line was long and I had to trust that she knew what to do better than me.  For more than two hours, we watched and helped families come in one by one to receive their new items.  In the end, what seemed like an abundance didn't seem like enough.  Sneakers of all sizes were gone first.  Then clothes for the bigger kids.  When we left, there were still people waiting in line for the few remaining items. 

Cute new shoes

We even found baby shoes.
 A new-used pair of shoes or pajamas can change the day for a child.  We can't do everything for everyone but we are all called to do something!  What is the something that you are called to DO?

Matthew 25:40 "I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me."

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