Obviously, footwear had been around for a long time prior to that date, but it is an interesting tidbit of information nonetheless.
I can still remember the struggle when I was learning how to tie shoelaces for the first time in my own life. All the little rhymes and stories offered as aids to learn the process seemed to be of little help, but eventually the task was conquered. I could tie my own shoes. (No, it wasn’t just last week when I mastered this task. On the other hand, it is still easier to use slip-on shoes and skip the whole tying process.)
As I read the brief historical sketch about shoelaces it reminded me of how many skills we have attained throughout our lives. I now take it for granted that I can tie shoelaces; it’s not a big deal. However, it is a gift from God to have the motor skills needed to perform such a task. Having an injured finger or thumb can quickly remind us of the many tasks we normally undertake with the nimble and skillful use of our hands. How frequently do we give thanks to God for these simple blessings?
The reason this article on the invention of shoelaces initially caught my attention was because of a Lenten reflection question that I had seen earlier. “What sinful areas in my life keep me “tied up”? That penetrating question gave a whole different perspective to my casual reading about shoelaces. The bondage of sin can keep us from experiencing life in abundance as offered by Christ. What are we doing to be set free? Do we seek the grace, love, mercy and forgiveness of God on a regular basis? Do we ask to be set free from the bondage of sin?
As we commemorate this anniversary (224 years) of the shoelace, I invite you to join me in doing three things.
1. Let us give thanks and praise to God for all the motor skills we possess.
2. Let us ask to be freed from the sins that tie us up?
3. Let us recommit to our acts of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving for the second half of Lent.
Happy Anniversary to the Shoelace!