Summary: Four point sermon on how shoes can remind us to be thankful

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Thanksgiving Service - 2002

Walk out onto stage with pants rolled up

„X Hey Sooze, What do you reckon? She hates it when I embarrass myself like this

„X Okay, so what¡¦s the deal with the pants?

„X Although I love to embarrass Susan, the real reason for rolling up my pants is so you can focus on my shoes

„X because as strange as it may seem, that¡¦s what I want to thank God for

„X You might think, ¡§Shoes, why would you pick shoes when we have so many other things to thank God for?¡¨

„X Well that¡¦s exactly my point ¡V the shoes are representative of all the things we overlook when it comes to thanking God

„X In 1992 Mark Buchannan, a pastor in British Columbia, Canada, found himself in a small town called Wairacka in Uganda. Every Sunday evening, about 100 Christians from the neighboring area gathered to worship. They met under a tin roof lean-to set at the edge of a cornfield. They sat - when they did sit - on rough wood benches. The floor was dirt. The instruments were old. Some of the guitars didn’t have all the strings. But could they worship! They made hell run for shelter when they cut loose. One Sunday evening, the pastor asked if anyone had

anything to share. A tall, willowy woman came to the front.

"Oh, brothers and sisters, I love Jesus so much," she started.

"Tell us, sister! Tell us!" the worshippers shouted back.

"Oh, I love him so much, I don’t know where to begin to tell you how good he is."

"Begin there, sister! Begin right there!"

"Oh," she said, "he is so good to me. I praise him all the time for how good he is to me. For three months, I prayed to the Lord for shoes. And look!"

She lifted her leg so everyone could see one foot. One very ordinary shoe covered it. "He gave me shoes. Hallelujah, he is so good."

The Ugandans clapped and yelled and shouted back, "Hallelujah!"

"I didn’t," says Buchannan. "I was devastated. I sat there hollowed out, hammered down. In all my life I had not once prayed for shoes. And in all my life I had not once thanked God for the many, many shoes I had."

„X Let me ask you, how many pairs of shoes do you have at home?

„X I a bit embarrassed to tell you this, but counting the ugg boots, gum boots, sandles, flipflops etc, I have 15 pairs of shoes at home

„X Susan is a bit of an Emalda Marcos when it comes to accumulating shoes and I thought she would have more than me, but she also has 15

„X How many of you have ever thanked God for your shoes?

„X And this woman in Africa was lucky, because many there don¡¦t even have one pair of shoes

„X Recently went to refugee day at the Peel St Church of Christ and we heard the story of a Sudanese boy 8 years old who walked for 8 years looking for his family

„X What did you do between the years of 8 and 16?

So the first thing these shoes remind me of are all the little things you and I who live in the developed world take for granted and for which we have never thanked God for

The second thing these shoes remind me of is you ¡V my brothers and sisters in the Body of Christ

„X Romans 10:15 And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, ¡§How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!¡¨

„X Take a minute to look at your feet ¡V How many of you think you have flattering feet?

„X Feet aren¡¦t normally the most flattering part of our bodies ¡V funny shaped feet, some toes longer than others, flat feet, some have corns, some smell

„X And sometimes this is what the body of Jesus Christ can look like on the outside ¡V those ugly exposed feet

„X But is this the criteria by which God calls these feet beautiful?

„X No, God¡¦s Word says, his people¡¦s feet are beautiful not because of what they look like on the outside, but what those feet are achieving ¡V bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to their part of the world

„X Sometimes we winge and complain about the others God has thrown us together with in his Body

„X But we need to look past the quirks and idiosyncrasies of the body and look to what those others are achieving for the Work of the Lord AND for what they are helping us achieve in our lives

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