I bought a new pair of flip flops because my old ones had worn down to an eighth inch of thickness and I was feeling every pebble under my feet. The new ones are like walking on a thick cloud and I got to wondering how long they would feel that way. How many miles will I get out of this new footware? How long will they last until I feel the pebbles beneath my feet again?
When I replace the tires on my car, I do that with the number of miles the tread should last in mind. I think, “Wow, these tires should get 50,000 miles before I have to replace them! By that time, I’ll need a new car!”
Why can’t shoes be labeled for tread-life? Why can’t shoes come anywhere close to 50,000 miles of wear? My research shows that the average person walks about 3.7 miles per day. That translates into over 1,300 miles a year. On a car, that kind of mileage would make the tires last for 30 years! So why am I replacing my shoes every six months with such low mileage? Obviously, Firestone does not make sneakers, but perhaps they should. After all, I’m not running marathons, I’m just walking.
Some people in the Bible are said to have walked with God (imagine trying to keep up with him!), and Christians are told to walk in the footsteps of Jesus and to do so with the gospel of peace as our shoes. Understanding the good news of Jesus is the foundation of faith upon which we build our lives having made peace with God. Participating in a good church can give you that good foundation that prepares for a walk with God that will last the rest of your life.
As for my flip flops, I still wish there was a tread-life rating … “These will last 20,000 miles …” or, “These will last 20 minutes.”
David Sandvick is pastor of First English Baptist Church in Frostburg.