Socks and Shoelaces

Johnny Wooden is a famous basketball coach of UCLA that I knew about as I am a UC graduate. What I did not know is that he is a graduate of Purdue, a Hoosier! One of his famous sayings I was tempted to use yesterday to introduce my sermon was, “When times get tumultuous, get back to the basics.” He was known for starting training by going over with his winning teams how to put on their socks, or how to tie their shoelaces. Players cannot be at their best with blisters or loose shoe laces tripping them up. Go back to the basics in tumultuous times! Certainly these days feel tumultuous to me as there are riots, illness, and political posturing. Proverbs 27:18 caught my eye this morning with a similar message, “He who tends a fig tree will eat its fruit, and he who looks after his master will be honored.” Making first things first, reminds me of going back to the basics of faith and making sure God is my first priority. Perhaps the putting on of shoes is starting the day with prayer or Bible reading. Tying my shoe laces may be a quick mental check to see what the loose strings of anger or bitterness that I need to deal with, forgive, and not let me trip on today. Taking care of the fig tree, that which feeds us and is life to us, is first importance or we will run out of energy to engage in the game of life. Perhaps we need to ask who the master is that we will be serving today – the Lord or the doctor or the family or the job. Putting God as our first priority may not be easy but it is going back to the basics and we will be honored! Blessings as you put on your socks and tie your shoe laces today!

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