I’m not exactly one of those girls whose closet is always organized, neat and tidy. Actually, I’m more of a “throw it in the pile and shut the door” kind of girl (don’t judge me.) I have friends who are insanely organized and I do admire them! Their shoes are organized by heel height, season and color. So, I was feeling pretty proud of myself for how organized my closet was after working on it all day. As I was cleaning and organizing the shoes in my closet I realized that I have many different styles and colors. There are fuchsia colored ones, red ones, brown ones, peep toes, sling backs, flats, stilettos and boots.
With this picture of my closet on my phone and my heart full of pride over my now organized and tidy closet, I went to my computer to scroll through some pictures of our missionary and founder at ER International.
Looking through the pictures, one stood out to me more than all the others. The family’s story that went along with the picture gripped my heart and brought tears to my eyes! This Honduran mother of 10, whose husband had recently died, walked 5 miles to hear a message of hope from the Bible and receive a hot meal for her and her children. She had ten children, seriously, what a woman! The understanding that she had 10 children and the fact that she probably had them at home, in a village, made me feel weak. Trust me, I've had four children and felt like a champ for delivering them! Her children’s feet were filthy and blistered because none of them had shoes! There’s nothing in her closet or the closets of her 10 children to organize or keep tidy. Come to think of it, she probably doesn’t even have a closet.
Americans purchase, on average, 7.5 pairs of shoes each year. That's just over one pair of shoes for each day of one week. I'm certain that Hondurans can't purchase 7.5 pairs of shoes each year because Honduras is the third poorest country in Latin America and the Caribbean. It is also one of the most vulnerable countries in the world to natural disasters. Hurricanes and long seasons of pouring rain can ruin their crops.
One-third of the people in Honduras live on less than one dollar a day.
$1.00 per day! This is hard for me to comprehend. How do they survive? What do they do to help themselves?
So, I asked myself, “What can I do?” I can’t help it that I was born in the United States and that my closet is full of shoes and purses, usually in piles!
I don’t have the financial resources to change the plight of all the poor families in Honduras. But can’t I make a difference for this one family? Or another family just like them? Absolutely I can!
My broken heart and the tears that are still flowing down my face won’t allow me to turn away and ignore them. I will never again be able to walk into my closet without thinking about this poor mother and her 10 shoe-less children.
Feeling compelled to reach the children of Honduras, we at ER International sense an urgency that we must do what we can to alleviate their suffering. We simply cannot stand by and do nothing!
I invite you to join me in giving to help the poorest among us.