I knew before even laying my eyes on them that the children who attend the Manna Feeding program here at Eagles Nest would steal my heart... and sure enough they have. :)
Monday through Friday they walk between one and two miles to come and eat a meal and learn a little bit more about the One who created them and the One who loves them more than they could possibly understand. Some travel carry for younger siblings along the way, some walk in groups and some come alone. They are often dirty, tired, and coughing... but almost always have a look of hope in their eyes.
Yesterday when Pedro led the devotion he asked the children how we could be praying for them and some of the children shared their concerns about sick parents and parents needing work. But what blew me away was the ones who shared praises of safety and praises of being given the meal they were about to be served. Such a small thing to so many of us and something I know I have almost always taken for granted.
As the children gobbled down their meal and their little bellies were filled there was one thing that I just couldn't take my eyes off of...
As I looked at child after child's feet my heart ached. Shoes are precious here and something not one of them takes for granted. 2 days ago I was (attempting) to talk to a couple little girls in Spanish while some of the other children were playing soccer. I couldn't help but to notice how one little girl kept reaching down and rubbing at her feet. As I gently took her shoes off I notice the sores on her toes and how they had been so crammed into the shoes that were too small for her feet and how swollen they were. So, I did the only thing I knew how to do, I offered her a pair of Kadens who happen to wear the size she needed. They were boys shoes but that didn't matter a bit to her. Her beautiful smile said it all as she walked away proudly in her new shoes.
Many of you have asked me to let you know if there are needs here. There are so many I don't even know where to begin. So many that often times it becomes overwhelming and I wonder how one pair of shoes could even begin to make a difference. But it is in those times that the Lord reminds me to take it one day at a time, one moment at time, one child at a time...
A pair of shoes here cost approximately $15 a pair. While shoes can be shipped (although shipping is expensive) sizes for the children are not always right. If anyone is interested in purchasing a pair of shoes for a child they can send the money through paypal to http://www.eaglesnestint.org/Donate-to-the-Eagles-Nest_f08529.html You will receive a confirmation number and then you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know that you donated money for a child's shoes. We will then size that childs feet, take pictures of that child receiving their new shoes and send it to you. :)
The need here is so great... and I realize that not all of us can do everything but at the same time if I do not let the needs be known than people don't know how to help if the Lord has laid it on their heart. Perhaps you know someone who has a birthday coming and this would make a great gift to them instead of trying to come up with an idea to give to someone who already has enough. Perhaps it's a good project for a Sunday School class or even a family who is mission minded.
Jesus does not separate the physical needs from spiritual needs- He attends to both. As followers of Christ I believe it is a blessing to do the same. Thanks for being His hands and feet here on earth.