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  • Writer's pictureKerry Sue Teravskis

WORK BOOTS


What kind of shoes are you wearing right now? Running shoes? Heels (remember those?)? Farm shoes? Cowboy boots? Combat boots? Work boots? Or even socks and slippers?


The right kind of footwear is crucial to get the job done. Since we live on a small farm, we understand that wearing flip flops is a no-no when working in the pasture, garden or with our large animals. We have farm shoes just for this purpose. We each own cowboy boots, even had spurs for a time, as well as proper shoes for walking around, ones that can get quite caked with pasture stuff, if you know what I mean.



When one is hiking, one has to definitely have the right gear. Not only for comfort, but for personal safety. When one is on a construction site, one has steel-toed work boots. On a boat far out in the ocean – proper shoes that won’t allow you to slip and slide on deck. Ballerina? Definitely pointe shoes. Can you picture a ballerina twirling around in clunky work boots? I don’t think any twirling would be going on. Rather lots of clumping and tripping. Instead of graceful Swan Lake, it would turn into a comedy act, burlesque style.


FIT FOR THE JOB


Now that we have established that the right kind of footwear is imperative, what kind of shoes are appropriate for a child of God? Well, that depends. Often God calls us to do what is right in front of us – and that could entail shoes to help someone move. Wingtips if one is to preach. Heels if one is on stage leading a women’s conference. Or running shoes if one is chasing after a toddler.


God also calls us to a specific job – a missionary going over seas would think twice about packing those fancy heels, but would make more room for sturdy shoes that could be worn in the jungle, hiking uncharted trails and hacking away at brush that has never seen a machete before. He could also call us to exchange our footwear mid-stream.


Such a thing happened to me this week.


BOOTS (I used to call them - "Blasted boots")


Therefore since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. (Hebrews 12:1 NLT) In my case, it is my boots. I’ve been wearing them for a year. A year. Hard to believe. But, a friend called me the other day with a challenge to stop thinking of these boots as ones issued in prison and start thinking of them as work boots.



It was not wrong for me to think that these boots were part of my confinement, and they most definitely have been. But, it is time to flip a switch in my mind. They are now to be looked upon as work boots. My situation has not changed. In fact, it ramped up in the last two days. I was attempting to get out of my room. I had two doctor visits that I had rescheduled multiple times and I desperately wanted to go to church. So, in my wheelchair, I did these momentous events. Too much. Crash. Burn. Yikes.


Again, my boots are a necessary part of my apparel. Every day, all day. Now, it’s with 3-4 layers of socks, straps, tape, heel-lace pads, ointment. But, the purpose has changed. It’s as if I got a deeper, more defined purpose for these boots. Not only are they used to promote healing, I need to view them as instruments in God's hands.


I have been asked by God to work with these boots on. And my work is to be done while I have my feet in the boots, elevated, with a heating pad on my calves and either a computer on my lap or pen and paper in hand. And my Bible right beside me. Yes. I am to write. And to not stop. I did not know I had so many words in me. I mean, I knew I had words, what woman doesn’t? But, I mean words flowing from these fingers and this heart. Actually they are from the Father’s heart and they minister to me first.


LIVING SACRIFICE




And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice – the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him. (Romans 12:1 NLT) In my case, my body comes with two boots firmly attached to my feet. Weighed down, and yet, not with a burden, but rather with a purpose. To know Him and to make Him known.


The funny thing about a living sacrifice is that it is vastly different from a dead sacrifice. Usually for the typical sacrificial system of the Old Testament, the animal was slaughtered first. Here, a living sacrifice is placed on the altar, alive. Which means the sacrifice does have a choice – stay, or climb down. And still another choice if the first one was to climb down: climb back up again. That to me is the real sacrifice. Counting the cost and making a firm decision to follow Christ and BE that sacrifice.


So, what will it be? Wear my work boots and get busy for Him? I will say it – YES.


How about you? Is God calling you to polish the shoes you already own, or is He equipping you with a new pair?


LET US PRAY


Lord, You are good and what You do is good. You alone are worthy of our sacrifice. Lead us to follow You in whatever You are calling us to. May we desire to please You in this – whether a new job or an old one that has seen better days but needs a fresh coat of paint. Create in us a clean heart so we can serve You wholeheartedly. With everything we’ve got. In Jesus’s Name. AMEN.

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