Posted by: ritagone | March 10, 2010

The Foot of the Problem

A few days ago I was trying on the new pair of shoes I had ordered on the Internet, a style guaranteed by the ads to make me walk more comfortably, safer, and to promote foot health for the rest of my life.  I am a sucker for a good ad; keep me away from infomercials on television, or I’ll add to my assortment of steam cleaners, magic cleaning cloths, and kitchen gadgets to beat the band (and I don’t even cook much).  (Okay, I don’t even cook ever.)  So when I hear about something guaranteed to make my feet feel better, I perk up.  I listen.  I get out my credit card and have the order in in record time.

Because my feet hurt a lot.  I find it hard to discover shoes that are actually shoes that I’d like to keep on those feet.  Instead, I have a habit of kicking off my shoes as soon as I hit the safe territory of my office.  (When I was a kid, because my father sold childrens’ shoes, I was never allowed to go barefoot.  How would that look? The shoe salesman’s daughter refusing to wear shoes?  As a result, my feet never toughened up.  I have pansy feet.  And to add to that, they get sore easily, cramped and molded into shoes that don’t always fit well.  So I pamper them, I try to take good care of them, because they are…here it comes!…the Achilles heel of my body.  (My theory is that every single person has one area of his physical body that is weak and needs more attention than any others; it may be your digestive tract, your head, your respiratory system.  That’s my theory and I’m sticking to it.)

As a result of all of this attention, I have quite an assortment in my closet of shoes, sandals, rubber footwear, all “guaranteed” to make you feel like you’re walking on air, that everything is footsy fine.  My closet is the Imelda Marcus’ of podiatry.  There they sit, testimonies to my attempts to make my lower extremities not complain when I’ve been on them for too long.  And I emphasize: there they SIT, because for the most part, they are failures.  All of those claims, those promises to make my feet feel better were to no avail.  They didn’t work.  When I come in wearing crocs, those rubberized shoes guaranteed to remove all foot problems, I still kick them off in order to go barefoot.  The orthotics, the fabrics, the shapes, all of those things I was told by print or television promises would make my life more comfortable: none of them have met that goal.

So what?  I know you’re saying to yourself now that this is a veritable TMI (too much information) piece you’re reading, and who cares?

But take note of the spiritual application that came to me the other day like an epiphany from above: the problem with my feet is not solveable by shoes.  I can put as many variations of cures on them but still the problem remains: my feet are damaged.  They’re not perfect, they don’t work as well as I’d like them to, and I believe this will always be the case, until I go to meet the Lord and receive not only my new self but new feet!! (Shout “hallelujah” right about now!)

In the same way, look at how humans try to find the panacea to the problems of their souls…and to no avail.  We try on various products and systems and methods in order to make our hearts and our souls work better, but we wind up with a closet-full of useless philosophies and things that failed.

And that’s why, so recently home from CA’s Leadership Summit, I find myself re-charged and re-challenged about bringing Jesus to those around me: He DOES work.  He is the cure, the answer, the relief that people need but don’t know what to ask for.  So instead of the bandaids for the deep, deep problems and situations that people around me are asking for, let me be willing and brave enough to offer them a systemic approach instead.  Let me go to the heart of the problem to share with them the heart of the Messiah.

I’m still processing some other things I took away from the Leadership Summit, most of them not as mundane as feet and shoes.  What is God saying to you this morning or this afternoon?  What is He trying to speak into your life?  And how are you about listening?  Perhaps this would be a good time to stop moving those feet of yours and sit and listen.

Have a blessed rest of the week.

Regards,  Rita

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