IF YOU ARE WONDERING why these two similar pictures of my shoes are here, let me assure you, it’s not a mistake. They’re here for you to play “spot the difference.”
While you’re trying to discover the difference between these two pictures, let me tell you something about the shoes. I bought them not long ago, and I really liked them. I liked them so much that I paid full price for them, when I usually buy only things on sale.
These shoes are very comfortable, yet trendy. I began wearing them every day to work. I soon realized, however, that something was wrong.
Did you notice that the shoelaces have little metal bits at the end, which add to their attractiveness? Well, as I walk, the little metal bits flip around and get wedged inside the shoe. They’re a painful nuisance! I have to stop walking and take the bits out.
Since my job requires quite a lot of sitting, this is not a major problem. I like the shoes, so for a few months I just dealt with the annoyance. I then had an idea. Maybe I should try tying the shoelaces differently. So I tied them by making the bows bigger, which made the loose ends with the metal bits shorter. This was different from the way I have always tied my shoes, but ta-da! It worked! I now enjoy my shoes without metal bits getting stuck between my foot and shoe.
Did you notice the difference with the laces in the pictures? It’s difficult to spot because it’s very small, but it resulted in a big change for me!
Why did I wait three months to try this? It simply didn’t occur to me at first. I thought the problem was a manufacturing fault and just accepted it. I bore the pain and nuisance of the shoes for three months because I didn’t consider changing the way I had done something all my life. This experience, however, has me asking the question, “What other ways of doing things or thought patterns or relationships am I stuck in that make my life painful and don’t allow me to enjoy life to the fullest?”
I’ve learned the importance of asking more questions. Jesus is a great example of asking questions. About 300 questions that Jesus asked are recorded in the Bible.*
So, how about you? Perhaps you, too, should ask more questions. These questions could include:
• Why am I doing this?
• Can this be done another way?
• Can I do something differently to improve my relationship with another person? If not, why not?
The pictures of my shoes are a great reminder to try something different. May they open the door to changes or improvements in your life.
* Martin B. Copenhaver, Jesus Is the Question: The 307 Questions Jesus Asked and the 3 He Answered (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2014).