How to Walk Into Your Shoe of Destiny
(A Lesson in Refusing to “Hide” Your Gifts and Allowing the “Body” of Christ to Bring Support and Healing to Your Life)
Matthew 3: 11&12
11 “I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
12 His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
What do physical shoes do for you? They provide protection from sharp or blunt objects, support your arches, help you to walk powerfully, and make a fashion statement. This is in the natural.
Let’s talk about Holy, spiritual shoes.
What do spiritual “shoes” do for you? They provide protection from sharp or blunt mouths, minds, and attitudes, support you in Christ, and make a Godly statement. The important thing to know is what statement are you making? What type of shoe best represents your walk in Christ Jesus? How do you reflect Christ in your worship, service, and relationships?
Are you a Flat in your Christian Walk?
Flat means Blah! Nothing there-nix-no excitement. Just standing there letting every load weigh you down, breaking down your supports, never attempting to lift the load by reaching beyond yourself to embrace Christ and others. Over time Flats lose their motivation and can no longer support themselves or others. Flats need encouragement from the Body to get pumped up and moving.
Are you a Flat? “Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.” Psalm 51:12
Loafers just gather pennies. They aren’t motivated to do much else.
Loafers sit there and watch everyone else work, gaining benefit from everyone else’s walk, but don’t judge them. Loafers may be burned out from prior commitments to the work or over-commitments to the work, not lazy. If so, loafers should try to do something small, but effective, to help the body to function. Loafers need understanding from the Body so that they have time to heal.
Are you a Loafer? “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only…” James 1:22
Tennis shoes were made for running, jumping, and walking long distances. Tennis shoes are fancy-smancy–sporting symbols and logos of the world’s heroes. They tend to walk in their own strength, not leaning and depending on Christ to see them through trials and share in their triumphs. Therefore, tennis shoes have potential for extreme burn-out, and the rubber, or padding, which is God’s presence in their lives tends to wear thin. They are so busy moving that they cannot hear God’s voice. The Body should strive to help the tennis shoes to lay down some tasks and burdens.
Are you a Tennis Shoe? “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3: 5&6
At first glance, you could imagine that boots are strength. They have thick linings and strong leather bindings—but boots can fall into the area of bullying which is weakness. By sheer force of will Boots order others to step their way—in their timing. They fail to see the small indicators that point to other’s frustration or exhaustion. Boots, whether they walk heavy or light, can still strip others of their dignity. This results in body members stumbling in their steps. Boots need the honesty of the Body to let them know when they tread on other’s toes.
Are you a Boot? “And be ye kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” Ephesians 4: 32
Sandals bring thoughts of the seashore—of waves rolling onto the sand, bringing treasures, but also debris. Sandals tend to be exposed, rubbed raw by life; their foundation eroded by the waters. Yet there is hope for Sandals. He who walked on the water is there to shore up their foundation and He provides Living Water. Jesus can shield the sandals from the sprays of life. He can soothe the sting of the salt of this earth with the salt that does not lose its savor. The Body can help by pouring the Balm of Gilead on the Sandal’s wounds.
Are you a Sandal? “Wherefore seeing we are also compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses—let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us; Looking unto Jesus the author and Finisher of our Faith…” Hebrews 12: 1& 2a
Slippers are those who pay no attention to how they live in Christ from day to day. Their actions tend to pull others away from Christ or at least cause them to stumble in their Christian walk. Slippers need to realize that the responsibility and accountability that exists in the Kingdom of GOD is for everyone to embrace. There is no room for false doctrine or backsliding behavior. The Body of Christ has a responsibility to the Slipper. It is the Body’s job to recognize, confront, and offer teaching and support to the Slipper.
Are you a Slipper? “Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather; that no man (or woman) put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brothers (or sisters) way.” Romans 14: 13
With gas prices skyrocketing out of control—our minds are constantly on the pumps. Pumps are the dancers of the Body of Christ. They are the height attainers—the ones who stretch and reach for the prize. Pumps help to build up the Body of Christ. They provide the spiritual Oomph that fuels the Holy Spirit’s fire in His church. Pumps lift others up to where they are—releasing energy to bring others into God’s throne room. Every Body needs pumps. Not only are they tall and beautiful—they are willing to help you grow too. Pumps are encouragers.
Are you a Pump? “Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.” 1 Thess. 5: 11
Last, but certainly not least are the Work Shoes. Work Shoes are always needed in the Kingdom of God. As the Bride of Christ, the church needs to work toward the “Great Commission”. Work Shoes are like worker bees in the hive. They fulfill their destiny in Christ within the Body without thought of glory or seeking acclaim. They recognize their job as those who provide for the basic needs of the Body whether it be teaching, preaching, prayer and exhortation, worshipping, cleaning, mending, or a combination of all of these acts of service. Looking to Jesus as the Head of the Church—they walk in His presence guided by God’s Living Spirit who motivates them to be servant leaders and servant followers. They do their work decently and in order, listening to the mind of Christ and His Word as their guide.
Are you a Work Shoe? Then count yourself among the Blessed, as are all of the shoes in the Body. God is not a respecter of persons—He simply encourages you to respect one another and to pull your own weight in providing for His Church. He loves you all as examples of the shoes we have spoken of, and He grants mercy to each of us as we work out our salvation.
“Then said Jesus unto his disciples, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Matthew 16: 24
Let us Pray…
Father, help me to be the kind of Christian you designed me to be. Let me always grant mercy and grace, as You do, to my sisters and brothers in the Body. Each of us make up the whole—and as we wear the shoes of the preparation of the Gospel of Peace, we ask that you would shore us up and help us to strive for Your kingdom that has no End. AMEN
All Scripture quotes taken from the Authorized King James Version
Charlene W. Kirst