Friday, June 24, 2016

My Shoes are Your Shoes

A teenage girl learns how to give unconditionally

Seleina and Kettelie

“… It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35f, NKJV). Christians quote this verse regularly, but sometimes it’s difficult to grasp the concept. It can be especially challenging to share with others while living in an impoverished environment where there is hunger, hopelessness, and misery.

But this wasn’t the case with two 13-year-old Haitian girls, Seleina and Kettelie, after they participated in a training conducted by Samaritan’s Purse. The program isn’t just making a difference in the lives of individuals but is also transforming families as a whole. It covers values, respect, responsibility, empathy, and conflict resolution.

Haiti children

Children receive certificates at the Samaritan’s Purse program

Selenia and Kettelie grasped the concepts rapidly, and because of this confidence and retention of the class information, both girls were asked to participate in a parent program the following week to capture the highlights of the classes. Seleina agreed immediately, but Kettelie’s countenance quickly digressed from joyfulness to sadness. She refused to take part in the upcoming program.

The following week, Kettelie returned to class and said she would participate. When asked about her change of heart, she said the reason she had initially refused was because of her flip-flops. Kettelie said other students had ridiculed her because her shoes were too small and not stylish; she was too embarrassed to stand before people in them. However, Seleina volunteered to help by sharing her pair.

Seleina, inspired by the training, felt a desire in her heart to share her one good pair of sandals with Kettelie. She said the teaching taught her that teasing and bullying hurt others. Seleina further explained that she shared her sandals with Kettelie because she would have wanted to be treated the same way.

“I thank God for this program, and can see a big change in my daughter,” said Seleina’s mother. “ I want my other daughters to be like her. Before this training, she was disobedient and talked back to me. Now, she helps out with cooking and cleaning, and I don’t even have to ask her.”

The girls’ presentations were a big success. They alternated the pair of sandals during their performances and both presented with confidence and winning smiles.

Seleina and Kettelie

Seleina and Kettelie

The circumstances we are dealt in life are not always easy or fair. However, our approach to life makes the difference. Possessing good moral values is a good place to start—blessing both the reaper and the sower. The valuable lessons acquired and applied by Seleina solidified an impact that will resonate with her and this community for a lifetime.

Seleina’s noble deed spoke to my heart and compelled me to look more intently at myself. I don’t believe I’m a bad person and, up until now, was confident that I’m a kind person with a tender heart. Yet the idea of sharing my footwear with someone else initially didn’t rest well for me. Does that make me selfish? Do I think that I’m better than others? Do I have a heart that God can use unconditionally? The answer is no to the first two questions and yes the last; I do have a heart that God can use unconditionally. Even with good-hearted people, circumstances can dictate our mode of giving and serving.

Seleina, divinely transformed by training she received and moved by compassion, desired to assist a hurting and disadvantaged girl. She helped according to her minimal resources and made a difference by taking her sandals off to allow a peer to wear them. This was a thoughtful and selfless act of kindness. After completing my introspective search, I’m confident that I too would have rendered the same gesture under similar circumstances. When we receive divine revelation and inspiration from God, there’s no end to the depths we will go to serve Him.

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7 Comments on "My Shoes are Your Shoes"

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Alice Kuria
4 months 6 days ago
This is such an inspirational story. The Bible says blessed is the hand that give…. Let’s learn to share and give what we have with others. This shows the love of Christ in us. We can always give in so many ways 1.prayers-when we pray, God listens and answers 2. Time – taking time to visit those in need like the orphans prisoners the aged and the Widows. Your presence for them always go a long way… They get a reason to appreciate the love of Christ. 3.Treasures-give you treasure in form of money or assets that God has blessed… Read more »
Joshua Julien
4 months 28 days ago

I definitely enjoyed this touching story. Personally I don’t know how big I could be about sharing clothes, but I’m sure in the end I might be compelled to do the right thing. To God be the glory.

Dominique Williamson
5 months 1 day ago

There are unique opportunities in life when get the chance to become a rainbow in someone’s cloud. Pay close attention so that you will not miss the opportunity to be a blessing to someone else. This story is truly inspiring and I pray that all who reads it will be moved with compassion to become a difference maker in someone else’s life.

Karen
5 months 10 days ago

Thanks for sharing, very inspirational story. The story bless me.

Minnie Taylor
5 months 10 days ago

Very inspirational story that makes you truly reflect on the true condition of your heart.

Denise Sewell
5 months 10 days ago

Beautiful and inspiring story.

Regina Wesley
5 months 11 days ago

Awesome story and even better challenge for us as Christians!! I would like to think I would indeed have passed the test.

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