Saturday, May 1, 2010

Momma always said.....

"Momma always says there's an awful lot you could tell about a person by their shoes. Where they're going. Where they've been." Forrest Gump

That quote is from one of the many "Momma" quotes from the movie Forrest Gump, but come to think of it my mama used to say pretty much the same thing. She had her hands full with me. It didn't really matter what I wore, I wanted to wear my tennis shoes with it. I can almost see her shaking her head in amazement now as she tried to figure out my reasoning for my shoes.

I guess I've always had a thing about shoes, something that may sound strange to those who know me and my usual choice of footwear. I think it's something all women care about in one form or another....just look at the number of shoes most women have in their closet! I even see it in tiny toddler size girls! When I meet a little one, if I complement her pretty shoes and tell her how much I like them, I immediately have a friend. It is just something in the DNA of a girl to care about what's on her feet. Think about every Cinderella story you've ever read...didn't the choice of shoes make a difference?

Now to any guys that may be reading this, don't stop just because you don't yet understand the topic. I know most of you are happy with two or three pairs of shoes, sometimes less. But hang in there...I promise there is a point to all this.

As I've said, I am fascinated with shoes, even though I rarely wear cute ones. I love to look at them and I admire those who can wear the cute heels and still walk at the end of the day. I've been known to NOT choose an outfit simply because I knew I had no shoes to wear with it. As any woman can tell you, it makes a difference! After all, you can't go out in cute capri pants and a pair of old clunky tennis shoes....not without ruining the picture.

This past Easter, I was determined to look cute in my dress, so I put on my one pair of really cute heels. I knew I could handle being in them for at least as long as it took me to get inside the church. Once there, I kicked them off because, well, my church pretty well knows me and it wouldn't surprise them that I had taken off my shoes and walked around. (I think secretly many of the other women wanted to follow my lead.) Anyway, I had no sooner kicked off my shoes and gotten a good distance from them than a friend grabbed my hand to lead me out into the parking lot to see their new blessing of a car! Let me tell you, I was NOT prepared to cross that rock filled parking lot. I did it somehow, but not with any speed and definitely not without pain! I found myself wishing I had on my heels, even if they did pinch my toes a bit!

I think shoes can even make a difference in our mood. Just this week I saw a newscaster put on a new pair of boots and break into dance! Don't tell me the right shoes can't put a spring in your step! They can make a difference in the way you feel! Take for instance last week. I woke up to a "don't mess with me" kind of mood. My regular comfy shoes just wouldn't do for that day. I knew I HAD to wear my shoes with the heel that day. I wasn't in a bad mood at all, but I was in a mood that said I meant business. My feet hurt a bit by the day's end, but somehow it seemed worth it. I didn't cover as much ground that day, but it was as if on that day, I stood in authority where I was. Perhaps it was because those shoes made me stand a bit taller than my normal 5'2", perhaps it was the sound my heels made when I walked, or perhaps it was just the way they made me feel.

The Bible talks about having "your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace" in Ephesians 6:15. I wonder if we ever really think about what that means. (Of course, I do because I've got this whole shoe thing going here!) What does it mean to wear the preparation of the gospel of peace? Since it is a piece of the armor of God, it's got to be important. We would never think of giving our soldiers all the armor they needed for battle and then sending them out barefoot or in flip flops, would we? They'd move as painfully and slowly as I did across that gravel parking lot!

These shoes are made to help us cover hard and rocky ground...places where the love of God has not yet removed the obstacles. For some reason the term, "walking all over someone's heart" comes to mind. These shoes, however, aren't there to crush, but to be able to make their way in. They allow us to go into places where bare feet just can not go. The Bible often mentions taking your shoes off when you stand on Holy Ground, in the presence of God. The shoes are for when we leave His presence and go out into the world to take His message of salvation. We may have to cross thorny places, rocky places, and places filled with every manner of hidden danger...still we are to go.

I can't help but think it's time for me to stop worrying so much about comfort or's time to make sure I am wearing shoes that allow me to carry the message of salvation to a lost and hurting world. My spiritual shoes don't have to look cute...but I guess they do match the outfit - the armor of God.

There's another quote from Forrest Gump that seemed to be the perfect way to close this blog. "My momma said my back's crooked like a question mark. These are going to make me as straight as an arrow. They're my magic shoes." My gospel shoes aren't magic, but they are powerful. They take me boldly where no man has gone before. How about yours?

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