Boots That Delivered

charity unicef boots

If these boots could talk, they would tell you an amazing story. Worn by Canadian Nigel Fisher, they have visited thirteen countries and have trekked over 100,000 kilometres during thirty years with the UN and UNICEF. They have walked through deserts, mountains, tropical rainforests, jungles, sandstorms and torrential rains. Nigel’s footwear brought emergency and vaccination programs to millions of children.

These boots navigated through the perilous rubble of Port-au-Prince after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. They witnessed negotiations between the Afghan government, the opposing Northern Alliance and an international coalition to ensure a polio vaccination campaign could proceed following the bombings when war broke out in 2001. Nigel wore them when he visited a UNICEF-supported shelter for girls in Bunia, Democratic Republic of Congo, who had been brutally raped by militias, some of them captured for years, many with babies.  The stories go on and on, just like the boots did.

Canadian humanitarian Nigel Fisher’s life-saving boots were inducted into the Bata Shoe Museum in 2012.

http://www.unicef.ca/en/video/the-story-of-a-pair-of-boots

https://secure3.unicef.ca/site/SPageServer?pagename=about_boots&s_locale=en_CA

http://www.unicef.ca/en/press-release/canadian-humanitarians-life-saving-boots-inducted-into-the-bata-shoe-museum

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Weathering the Walk: On the Heels of a Volcano

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It is difficult to walk, when instinct screams ‘flee’

Smoke stalks; poisonous gas is in pursuit.

A mountain’s eruption consumes a village in North Sumatra

Indonesia is on its knees again.

Villagers fly on their feet to safer ground,

Home and farm and friends are behind the ash veil

Levels below the fiery lava.

Rural roads, blocked arteries of this heartland,

Pound with running, escaping, burning feet.

 

Key words rearranged from article and source of photo:

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2014/02/02/14-dead-3-injured-mt-sinabung-erupts.html

 

Alert Eye Picks Next Foothold

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“There’s all sorts of walking –

                                                from heading out across the desert in a straight line

      to a sinuous weaving through undergrowth.

          Descending

               rocky

                   ridges and talus slopes is a specialty in itself. 

It is an irregular dancing – always shifting – step of walk on slabs and scree. 

           The breath and eye are always following this uneven rhythm. 

                  It is never paced or clocklike, but flexing –

                              little jumps –         sidesteps –

    going for the well-seen place to put a foot on a rock, hit flat, move on –

                            zigzagging along and all deliberate.

 The alert eye looking ahead, picking footholds to come, while never missing the step of the moment. 

      The body-mind is so at one with this rough world

              that it makes these moves effortlessly once it has had a bit of practice. 

    The mountain keeps up with the mountain. 

 

Quote by: Gary Snyder “Blue Mountains Constantly Walking”

Quoted in:  Rebecca Solnit’s “Wanderlust” http://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/1419449-wanderlust-a-history-of-walking

Picture source: http://www.123rf.com/photo_1498523_trekkers-walking-along-a-mountain-path-mont-blanc-valley-west-alps-italy.html

 

Traversing the Mountain of God: A North Korean Odyssey PART FOUR

(So sorry that this was posted ‘out of order’, TS)

PART FOUR

 

I watch my feet on this mountain

Not wanting to stumble

I watch as You super-intentionally

Widen my path

Remove obstacles

Shadow and overshadow me

Strengthen me

The wind at my back

You keep me upright and aligned

Feet following

Jesus

Mountain of God.

 

 

As I risk for You

I anticipate Your release of power

In the here and now.

For You, from You, for You.

I really don’t know where I am.

I am following blindly on faith.

You taught me this.

I am really doing it.

I can engage in nothing and with no one around me

Only the ones You have given to hold up my arms

In this prayer of pleading

This prayer-walk you are leading.

As heightened as my senses are

There is a dullness, a doubt

In this long walk through this tunnel to freedom.

 

I hear the bidding of Your Spirit.

Wait! You have been trained to wait!

Keep walking!

I am with you and will never let you go.

The plan to bring you out is Mine.

And so,

I await a home-coming in my going.

The final stage can take forever

To the ears of a man listening to a clock.

 

© 2013 by Teresa Sandhu. All rights reserved

 

Traversing the Mountain of God: A North Korean Odyssey PART TWO

Then, a pattern in me takes shape

Encouragement turns into inspiration and then into a gasping desperation

Your fire burns within me, a deeper prayer

To move out of this oxygen-starved place. 

To change altitude.

To leave this godless, grasping society.

I long for freedom of movement

My feet are ready to go!

With You at my back.

I am ready to move out.

Courage under fire!

This pattern of prayer comes from You.

 

These days are marked on the calendar of strategic planning.

Holy Spirit, You equip me with a vision of what next

Training me within

In my heart, I can see through Your eyes.

I walk before You, dear wind

As You tilt me onto new paths

And up this high mountain.

Of the presence of the Lord.

I am there as You share wisdom beyond my own

I am there in the understanding of plans You provide.

Your counsel has entered and registered within me and

You have given me the blueprint of an exit strategy.

I get prepared to leave

I await Your hand

It will cost me all I have

I pour out my all and

Wait in the fear of the Lord.

 

These days

The waiting teaches me everything

As I cross unveiled thresholds of hope

You teach me to see with Your vision

You teach me to speak with Your perspective,

Your authority and Your peace.

My feet are anointed to be free.

My feet have followed You underground

And now

I am prepared to climb out and climb higher.

And now

I am ready to leave.

 

Whisper, please, dear wind

Into my heart any correction or redirection

That my Heavenly Father speaks to You.

We will talk much as I go.

These are the words I remember speaking to You

In my heart before I held my breath….

 

 

© 2013 by Teresa Sandhu. All rights reserved

Traversing the Mountain of God: A North Korean Odyssey PART ONE

Walls within walls within walls…

My inner-speak is free and You hear every word.

We walk in the secret garden of love You have planted in my heart

I can see how things should be in the light of Your love.

You regard my rootless restlessness

In the outer political dungeon

With Your loving compassion.

And then, as though it were a blessing and a preparation,

You take off my thin shoes with Your warm hands.

Wash my calloused feet and anoint them with the fragrant oil

Of Your presence.

You have given them

An itch for freedom of movement

Outside these walls.

 

These days

My outer path is cold, circular and unrelenting.

A maze of fragmented heart-rending choices

To do what is best for my family

And yet serve the political dragon.

When I walk ‘underground’

I find great illumination in the darkness

As I walk in Your word in worship.

Outside, I walk with heart tucked in

A paper badge on my sleeve;

My biggest lie.

 

With Your wind at my back

My longing for freedom gets a longer stride.

Your comfort is there as I turn a corner and make difficult choices…

What to do next? So many possible snares!

Comfort again from You and

By Holy Spirit impetus,

I am bid to move into the forbidden freedom.

To climb an impossible mountain.

With courage.

 

Where will strength and provision for the treacherous journey come from?

Wholly His I have wholly received

The breath of life within me.

The source of life.  The overcoming power.

You breathe encouragement into me

 

Your every Word a firestorm of love

You fan the flame in my heart.

I have learned an inner walk

Where I walk on the coals of this furnace within me

In practice

You have shown me what I can do

With You at my back.

Every practical matter is in Your hands.

Sight unseen,

I begin to trust deeply in an underground part of me

That You are forming.

 

© 2013 by Teresa Sandhu. All rights reserved