Wednesday, October 20, 2010
boots for the needy
As a coach of church planters, it has been such a joy to begin coaching Dianna McCartan. Dianna leads a project for Christian Associates in St. Paul called Communitas Twin Cities.
Communitas forms Christian community around the cause of mission; specifically ministry to the impoverished and homeless.
On Saturday the 16th, Communitas worked with a ministry called Jesus Delivers. We prepared donated food, loaded it into a truck and hit the streets of St. Paul, serving people living on the streets, or in their cars. We learned a LOT today - about what really is NEED. Our eyes were opened wide as we saw that things like empty plastic bags and the little sugar packets that you give out with coffee were some of the hottest commodities. And ANY free item of clothing was sought after the same way most of me and my friends respond when Macy's or Kohls have a 50% off sale.
In all this, we were told about the boots.
"Look at the shoes these folks are wearing," our leader from Jesus Delivers said. "These are the shoes most of these guys will head into the coldest days of our winter with."
He went on to explain that while many organizations give jackets, hats, gloves, and even food out regularly, no one provides warm winter boots to those that need them the most.
They showed us a sample of the boots they give away. I don't know if my words can give you the picture of what we felt, but it was akin to something like this: a hungry, crying baby, and a bottle of milk. You see the baby cry, you feed the baby and meet its needs. There is no question, there is no hesitation, no thinking, "Should I or shouldn't I?" You just DO IT. That's what it was like to see the boots, and see the shoes on those we had just fed.
Here's the ask: The Jesus Delivers ministry gets Rocky Mountain Thinsulate lined boots at cost- for $43 a pair from the company that makes them. These same boots sell for $120 at Mills Fleet Farm. For five years they've been taking boot orders, getting the size needed and handing the boots out. For five years they have to turn some away because there aren't enough funds to buy all the boots. They need help to meet the need.
The heart of Communitas is to be the hands and feet of Jesus, to live in the reality that 'whatever you do for the least of my brothers or sisters, you do for me'.
So we are taking up the rally cry - applying that thinking to this need, and asking, all we know, friends, loved ones, co-workers, all..... would you join us in this? Would you consider being a sponsor of a pair of boots for $43? Maybe ask a friend to do it with you and split the cost. Whatever it takes, please think about meeting this need with us.
If you would like to sponsor a pair, please email us at Communitastc@yahoo.com. All donations are tax deductible. Even better, all donations are the response of a better humanity and a beautiful expression of "thy Kingdom come, thy will be done."
Because of the timing of when the boot orders need to be placed, we need all responses by Sunday October 24.
If you live in the Twin Cities, consider joining up with Communitas in their monthly ministry to the needy. Email Dianna at the address contained above or visit their website to find out more.
In either case, maybe you'd like to donate to help fund a pair of boots or to partially fund a pair of boots. It gets pretty dang cold in Minnesota. In this instance, "a cup of cold water" offered in Jesus' name looks like a pair of warm boots. Please consider helping, if even only a little bit. Let Dianna know within the next 4 days.