This I Believe

Murray - W. Hempstead, New York
Entered on January 28, 2007
Age Group: 65+

A Box of Old Shoes

I found a box of old shoes waiting for me as I came to work this morning. At first it appeared to be someone’s discards. The boots were grimy and were likely used by a landscaper. Other than hard wear and tear there was nothing wrong with them. They were carefully placed so that anyone passing would have a chance to see what was inside the box.

As I disposed of the zapadas I overcame a momentary annoyance at having to handle these apparent discards but then I thought of who might have left these shoes. What was the purpose of leaving a box of shoes and who might be the intended recipients?

What I thought was my garbage may have been intended for someone else. If one laborer can afford to buy new boots then there may be others who are in need. A quotation flashed into my mind; I had no shoes but then I met a man who had no feet.

For a poor laborer to gift his lesser possessions is something for us to consider. What can I learn from this act of kindness? What can I do to help the poorest and the neediest? Giving away once used possessions can bring real value and may even provide the means of a person to earn a living. Beyond old shoes are smiles, handshakes and friendships.