We remember beaches, ice-cream and sunshine. We remember tramping across heather-clad hills, boating on calm lakes and sunshine. We remember the stays in picturesque towns, we bring to mind family picnics and we never forget the sunshine.
However, these are rather selective memories.
Since we understand, just fine, that beaches were often wind-swept and bordering stormy seas, hills and waterways were often cloaked in rain and insects, and sand did get into our sandwiches.
Even in summer then the sun did not always shine.
Moreover, with maturity and experience of life, we realise there can even be winter days in the height of summer.
Yet despite the squalls and sunsets ahead in our lives, we can still celebrate summer. We can give thanks for this period when the world seems warm, enjoyable and so full of opportunities. And above all, we can we quietly be joyful because we have a God of unmatched shoes.
A man who was commissioned to paint a picture of the Prodigal Son. He worked determinedly to create an image truly up to telling this most famous of parables.
Finally, the day came when the picture finished.
The scene was set outside the father’s house, and showed the open arms of each as they were just about to meet and embrace.
The man who commissioned the work was well pleased, and was prepared to pay the painter for his work, when he suddenly noticed a detail that he had missed. Standing out in the painting above everything else in the scene, was the starkly apparent fact that the father was wearing one red shoe and one blue shoe.
He was incredulous.
How could this be, that the painter could make such an error?
He asked the painter, who simply smiled and said
“ Yes, this is a beautiful representation
of the love of God for His children.”
“What do you mean?”
he asked, puzzled.
“The father in this picture
“The father was not interested
in being colour-coordinated
when he went out to meet his son.
In fact, he was in such a hurry
to show his love to his son,
he simply reached and grabbed
the nearest two shoes
that he could find.
He is the God of the Unmatched Shoes.”
That’s then why we truly give thanks to God this very day.
It is because he, in Jesus Christ, is rushing towards us no matter the season.
In summer, he celebrates with us no matter how we are dressed.
In autumn he holds us tightly without concern for his dignity.
And in winter, he carries us – he carries us more than a mile
in our own shoes.
Illustration comes from Sermon.com