Old shoes. Today was an old shoes kind of day, which to me isn’t necessarily a bad thing but more about that later. Page 307 began with the usual cleaning and building prep tasks and as I stopped by my office while it was still dark, there was a deer standing there at my window. I don’t know if she was checking on me, trying to figure out why my light was on, or simply on her morning walk, but it appeared she was quite comfortable with where she was and where I was. Yes, there are times when we startle each other, but overall the deer and I have gotten used to existing on the same piece of property. I don’t know what they think of seeing me on a regular basis, but I love to see them wander by with no apparent fear. After a momentary connection, we each went back to what we had been doing and went about our day.
When the building was ready for the day, I spent the rest of the morning taking care of some maintenance issues and setting up my latest book in a format that I could submit to Amazon to be published as a Kindle book. I remember my first book that I formatted for Kindle and the work that was involved in taking it from a computer file ready for print to a file ready to be published as an e-book. Today, as I went through that process with my eighth book, there was a comfort level in what I was doing. In the beginning I had downloaded an instruction booklet that I referred to often. Today the changes in formatting and structure came naturally with no need to look up the process or investigate how to do what I wanted accomplished. Through repetition and practice, I have become familiar with the process and have developed a comfort level with it that leads to a confidence that the result will be what I expect.
Part of the maintenance tasks of the morning was arranging for a service call to work on the boilers that started up last week but have since decided not to come back on. While I waited on the service tech, I spent the time going through my Wednesday evening lesson and some material for the Saturday prayer teaching I will be doing. As I waited on the service tech and then worked with him in figuring out what was going on with the boiler, I was reminded of how nice it is to work with individuals you can trust and have built up that comfort level of knowing they will do what needs done and not just do things to increase their profit. We found a boiler pump that was not pumping and while he gave me a quote to replace it, he also did some follow-up to see if there were other options that would be less expensive but still be able to hold up to the use required of it. When he called back later to let me know that the pump was not able to be rebuilt, I was comfortable in telling him to order the new pump motor and install it — over the years he has earned that level of comfort and trust. It is good to have people you can call on that you know will treat you fairly and with respect.
All of that brings me back to the old shoes. A few days ago I noticed my shoes were coming apart. Not just a little wear here or there, they were beginning to completely disintegrate! Yet I’m still wearing them because I don’t have any other shoes that are this comfortable. At some point my feet will start protruding from the sides of my shoes and the comfort that I now experience will disappear. With winter fast approaching, I know I need to replace these shoes sooner rather than later, but I don’t really want to. You see, comfort can be a good thing when it puts us at ease in doing the important things that need done. Yet it can also be a bad thing when it stands in the way of us leaving behind something that has lost its usefulness and moving on to something that would be of greater benefit. Our relationship with God ought to bring a level of comfort to our lives where we learn to trust Him when He says what we’re doing is working and to trust Him when He says the wear is too great and it’s time for something new. The good news is that God has the ability to make something new of our life that while exciting and risky, is more comfortable than anything we have ever known because He is in it.
I pray that you and I would know the joy of walking with Christ in complete comfort even when the way is difficult. I pray that we would examine all that we hold on to because of its comfort and ask God to help us see if it is still useful. I pray that we would have godly wisdom in knowing when the comfort of something in our life has lost its usefulness. I pray that we would have a relationship with God that is comfortable in letting Him make the decisions for our life. I pray that we would allow God to move us out of our comfort zones and into His.