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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Your Dying Spouse 95 - Perspective's Shoes {FMF}

Time for the last Five Minute Friday for 2015, the timed key-word inspired weekly writing challenge.

Since I had a couple of nasty blows to the head last weekend - two falls, and my face is basically broken - I'm not going to be too watchful of the timer. Thinking and typing are tough, as I was concussed, and am still recovering.

The keyword this week is...hmmm. It's CHOOSE YOUR OWN PROMPT WEEK.

Well, let's use SHOES.

I'd post a picture of my shoes, but I think I would rather not. For one thing, I don't have a camera. For another thing, they loo pretty bad.

There were sort-of-dress-shoes. I used to wear them to conferences, and eventually realized thatthere would BE no more conferences, so they were relegated to Dog Duty.

They lasted quite a while, until the sole on one broke from side to side, and the other developed a lengthwise slit in ITS sole.

The uppers started separating, as well. Walking in burrs and on gravel, it seems time to retire them. Well, throw them out.

I still wear them. They're remarkably uncomfortable, especially in winter (never got above 32F today) and without socks.

This is really stupid. I mean,money's tight, but I should be able to get a cheap pair of shoes.

It isn't the money.

It's the perspective.

There are more people out there who can't afford shoes than who can, and this is simply a reminder that however uncomfortable I am, however bad the abdominal pain may be (and how much I loathe incontinence), it could be way worse.

Because, you see, I have shoes. Never mind that they're held together with duct tape. never mind that they transmit every rock-impression, never mind that sharp stuff can freely come in the sides.

Never mind that in the snow, my feet freeze.

I have shoes, and this is my constant reminder.

Please don't think that it's a sign of solidarity and compassion; please don't make me out to be a good person for this. This is for me -

Count your blessings, because you have what others dream of.

You have shoes.

That's it.


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48 comments:

  1. Andrew, what a great post, and a great perspective. I have shoes. I have more than one pair of shoes. I forget what a gift that is.

    When I visited the Philippines on a missions trip years ago, I took pictures with me. One was of my then-eleven month old crawling up the step between my living and dining room. The rest of the room was heavily shadowed. One lady saw that picture and said, "Wow, you have a big house." She never saw the kitchen, family room, OR the upstairs. We truly live in luxury. And I (hanging my head) take it for granted. Thank you for the reminder that I truly have been given much. I have what others dream of. I need to use it well for God's glory.
    Love being your neighbor this week. :) Praying for you, my friend.

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    1. Jeanne, thank you so much for being here!

      It's true that we have much...and we are intended to use this blessing as a springboard for the Lord's work. Hard to do, sometimes...hard to know just HOW to use it.

      Guess that's what prayer's for!

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  2. Andrew, maybe since you wrote about shoes, I can write about soles. And then I can use their homonym and write about souls and how feet tie into the gospel.
    Or perhaps I will borrow your shoes prompt and elaborate on what the velveteen rabbit means.
    So happy you posted tonight!!!
    -Tammy

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    1. So I am at #14. I wrote on "choice". And I didn't get political. :D

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    2. Nope, you didn't get political, Tammy...you wrote a GREAT post.

      Feet definitely do tie in,as Jesus washed the dudes' feet...and they walked just about everywhere. And the Apostles were told to shake off the dust...from their feet...at any town that paid them no nevermind...

      Lots of feet. No Dr. Scholl's foot powder. Better to be living now.

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  3. Great perspective, Andrew. And I wrote about my year and all the many things our family did and the places we visited. I should just be thankful for simple. I should just be thankful for shoes. It's good to be put in my place, and it's good to be reminded of what's important. I'd still appreciate seeing a photo of them though. Thank you for allowing God to use you, your writing on this prompt, and your perspective! Blessings to you.

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    1. I loved your post, Julie! Reading about your family was such a treat.

      I'll see if I can get barbara to take a picture of the Mighty Shoes for the first 2016 FMF post. Her phone has a camera; I don't have a phone (my hearing's so bad, I don't really need one).

      Thanks for being here, my friend!

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  4. First off, sorry to hear about your injuries. I pray that you will experience relief from the pain and concussion.

    And, invariably, I'm inspired by your perspective. "Count your blessings, because you have what others dream of" struck deeply with me today. Having undergone a series of relationship shakings/losses in the last few months, it's easy to wallow in what I don't have. Thanks for the reminder...my God has supplied all my needs, even if what I have isn't exactly display-case worthy.

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    1. Katy, thank you so much!I'm returning slowly to what passes for normal...and at least I can write off being weird by saying, "Hey...concussion? Helooo?"

      Perspective is one thing, but pain still hurts, and I'm sorry for the troubles you've had. My prayers and thoughts are with you.

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  5. Oh Andrew, great perspective. Your post made me think of a story I want to share with you. My friends Jon, Renee and Ben were in Haiti during the earthquake. Ben lost his life there. And in the chaos of the quake, Jon lost his shoes. Afterwards they were helping haul supplies to those in need. Jon found Ben's shoes, put them on and said "Buddy, let's do this." We truly are blessed. Even though you have been through so much, you are still a messenger of God's grace "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring Good News!" Praying and praying for you friend! I'm parked in the #15 spot this week.

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    1. Oh, gosh, Tara...what a story! It just leaves me stunned, the grace and courage...wow.

      Thank you so much for your kind words, and most especially your prayers. They are SO appreciated, my friend!

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  6. Andrew, I like it. You took your dirty old shoes and turned them into Gospel.

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    1. Yes! Exactly what I was thinking too!

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    2. Susan and Karilee...thank you! You've made me...and my shoes, which may one day be retired but will now never be discarded...very happy!

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  7. Andrew, I love your unselfish perspective. Your feet are beautifully shod with the gospel of love and peace, no matter what your actual footwear may look like. This post spoke into my shoe loving soul and made me think how I could bless someone with some of my (usually taken for granted) largesse. Thank you for inspiring us so vividly today and humbling us with your words. Praying your injuries will soon heal after the recent falls and you will have strength and grace enough to enjoy Christmas with Barbara and the dogs.

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    1. Joy, thank you so much for your kind and grace-filled words. hey mean a lot to me...I'm so privileged to know you, and indeed to know everyone here at FMF.

      It will be a good Christmas, no matter what. It's just a matter of deciding.

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  8. Andrew- How I need this message in this season when I'm surrounded by lies that constantly try to convince me that I need more, better, bigger, fancier.. Thank you for reminding me to get a new perspective. I'll be praying that God is my Vision this Christmas. And may we both experience Emmanuel - for in Him, we have enough. Merry Christmas!

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    1. karen, I'm so glad that those shoes...and I now look at them with different eyes...spoke to you. The season is indeed well-garnished by lies, but the underlying truth remains.

      Yes. Let us both experience Emmanuel.

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  9. I appreciate this perspective, Andrew. We're in a season of giving, but many of us take advantage of it as a season of greed. I love the attitude of "I have shoes" instead of complaining about having better shoes. I thank God for providing basic needs in my life. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. And thank you, Samantha...for being here, and for the wisdom of your words..."We're in a season of giving, but many of us take advantage of it as a season of greed."

      Stunningly good stuff. You nailed it, So often we push the greed onto "them"...but in reality it's us, and certainly has been me.

      Thanks again...and Merry Christmas!

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  10. Yes, Andrew...the words you wrote fit perfectly with the season - the season of Christmas; the season in which you find yourself; the season of anytime! We think we need so much; yet, a pair of shoes...or ten pairs of shoes. Really makes no difference when you have NO shoes!

    As always, your post has touched me deeply. Continued prayers for you and Barbara; for this season and the seasons ahead. I did not do an FMF; still trying to write my Tuesday @ Ten!!

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    1. Barbara, thank you so much for this. So often we have what we truly need, and let it fall into a sort of contempt because we want more...and it is so easy to lose the simple appreciation.

      Thank you so much for the prayers, and for being here!

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  11. What matters most. You faithfully take us there, Andrew... your readers who are so spoiled to read what is real and coming from your heart. I'm so grateful...

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    1. Angela, thank you. Your kind words mean so much to me! I'm grateful for them, and for your presence here today.

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  12. So true. We have shoes. We have love. We are blessed. Thank you for this post.

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    1. And thank you for being here, Norma...you're in my prayers.

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  13. Great post. Great reminder to be thankful for things it can be so easy to take for granted, which might seem like little things but that so many other people don't have.

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    1. Thank you, Carly. Indeed, even when we focus on one thing...like the shoes we have...it's so easy to overlook others. Clean clothes, a roof, the love of family, friends, and dogs (all 24, here!)...itcan be so easy to pass through this, "eyes on the prize", as they say, unheeding the real prize that we already have.

      Thank you so much for being here.

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  14. A good reminder on perspective Andrew. Nice shoes or duct taped together shoes, at least we have them. Some of us many pairs of shoes while others have none. We are truly blessed!

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    1. Yes, indeed, Christy...every step I take, I am grateful for the shoes I have, and for the lesson they teach.

      And duct tape can fix almost anything! I wonder...on which day did God create it?

      Thanks so much for being here!

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  15. So true, Andrew! I complain that I don't have certain things sometimes, but it's far more than what someone else might have. It's true what is said about comparison being the thief of joy. We'd be in pretty good shape if we would just thank God for what we DO have.

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    1. That's perfect, Becky..."comparison is the thief of joy." Thank you for bringing that to the conversation! I hadn't heard it before.

      It's so true. So much of my life I wanted what "he or she" had...and didn't realize that my life was incomparably richer than those to whom I would compare.

      And I got over wanting the Ferrari 308...last week.

      Thank you so much for being here!

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  16. Ack. Your words hit home today, Andrew. All too often I am ungrateful for the bounty I have...ok, I'm discontent over something petty, which is just a backwards way of acting ungrateful. Thank you for the perspective check.

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    1. And thank you, ANita...you said it perfectly..."a backwards way of acting ungrateful". I never thought of it that way, and did it SO often in my life!

      Thank you for being here!

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  17. andrew, thanks for stopping by myblog. glad i read your good words. gratefulness comes when we are pushed...or holding our shoes together with duct tape. i'm glad you have shoes and are warm. i hope you can be comfortable.

    we all want to be grateful. we just don't want to learn it in difficult circumstances. i don't think it works that way:( blessings brother as you contemplate the birth of Christ.

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    1. Thank you for being here today, Martha...and I'm as comfortable as circumstances allow. For that, I'm grateful. I won't ask for more.

      You're absolutely right, we DON'T want to learn this stuff under difficult circumstances...but if I could trade away the pain and would have to give up the learning as well...I wouldn't do it.

      I love my life.

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  18. Oh so true! And the harder it gets to remember the more real these blessings become . . . if that makes sense.

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    1. Rose, you said it beautifully..."the harder it gets to remember the more real these blessings become..."

      Perfect. Just perfect!

      Thank you for being here, and for bringing this wisdom to the conversation!

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  19. Once again, you've given me pause and reminded me how fortunate and blessed I am. I am rich indeed. May you feel God's presence and Love this Christmas season, Andrew.

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    1. Carrie, thank you so much! God is here. This is a physically dreadful night - feel like I've been impaled (and I HAVE been impaled), but His presence is very real now.

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  20. I'm glad you keep those shoes. I'm glad they help you carry your cross.

    Drusilla Barron
    http://lovedasif.com

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    1. Drusilla, your words just did something very rare. They made me cry. Thank you.

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  21. The "shoe" perspective is a valuable one indeed, Andrew. Bless you for sharing. Prayers continue for you and Barbara.

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    1. Thank you so much, June! I figure...well, Yeshua is pronounced Ye-SHOE-ah, so I guess I'm good to go!

      I truly appreciate the prayers, It's a rough evening. I need them.

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  22. Thanks for the reminder of how blessed we are! We all need that perspective from time to time...and maybe especially at this time of the year. Praying for you, as always.

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    1. And thank you, Holly...for being here, and most especially for the prayers.

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  23. So much of the time we focus on what we do not have. It's no wonder that we feel cheated or discouraged in life when that's our focus. Just today during my prayer time, I was thinking about how there are so many gifts and protections that God has given me that I do not see. They happened, I have no doubt, but I did not see them because they were done in the spiritual realm for me or others I love. In fact, just this past week, my brother became septic from an abdominal infection. We worried if he would recover because his mind was "gone." But he has rallied finally and I believe that is a blessing from God! So like you, Andrew, I'm grateful that I have shoes and so much more in this life. Let us never forget! Merry Christmas, my sweet friend! Prayed for you during my prayer time as I do every day! I hope you have a day that is at the very least less painful than yesterday and are encouraged by all the friends who love you here in the cyberspace!

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    1. Oh, Beth, your brother! I'm so glad he's rallied. A septic abdomen is a lot of woe...my prayers are with you, with him, and with all your family.

      I truly appreciate the prayers, and really, the community I've found through this medium has made it possible to go on,and to keep looking up.

      If my health hadn't collapsed, I would not have found this. I wouldn't change a thing.

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