I Don’t Care Who’d Rather Be in My Shoes
A Declaration To Stop Settling in the Name of Gratitude
I read it said somewhere that someone would love to be in your shoes. Or rather my shoes. I struggle with this idea of always being grateful versus simply settling for what I’m unhappy with. Anytime there’s the slightest utterance of dissatisfaction somebody is quick to remind you that someone, somewhere would love to trade places with you.
So the moments of despair get tucked deep inside of hearts in the name of gratitude.
I was staring at an excel sheet one day. Cell F419 was patiently waiting for my data entry. I knew what to write. I was reading through customer comments and identifying one of thirteen categories to which the comment fell. Easy enough. Yet, incredibly hard.
So I started to give myself a pep talk:
“You are getting paid for this.”
“It’s better than twirling your thumbs all day.”
“Do all things as unto the Lord.”
And then finally, “What would Jesus do?”
“Jesus would be the best excel data entry person ever!” I answered myself.
“But would He?” I soon found myself wondering.
Jesus knew what He was here for. When His mother and brothers were waiting to speak to Him He answered, “Here are my mother and my brothers,” pointing at His disciplines.
This isn’t a religious article, but this is where my thoughts led me. I don’t believe that Jesus would go in a direction that didn’t align with His purpose. But when we hide what we’re truly feeling because someone would love to be in our shoes is that not what we’re doing?
So what if someone would rather be in my shoes if my shoes are too tight on my feet and they hurt my ankles when I stand for too long? Should I not acknowledge that my feet hurt and pretend that everything is fine?
I tried that once. As a young girl I was outside playing with my cousins and siblings when the sole of my shoe started to separate. Running, skipping, and jumping became uncomfortable as the sole flapped with my every movement. I went to sit down.
My uncle James came to sit next to me and asked me what was wrong. “Nothing,” I answered.
“Are you sure?” he replied.
Yet, at some point I decided to get up and my uncle saw my sole flapping in the wind. He instantly knew what was wrong and gave me a different pair of shoes to wear.
If your shoes were too big or too small or perhaps the sole was coming undone would you not go in search of a pair that had a better fit? And perhaps the ill-fitting pair would go to use for another?
Who cares if someone else would love to be in my shoes if I’m dying in my shoes? If I’m missing my purpose in these shoes? Who cares if the fit is all wrong and I’m distracted from my calling while wearing these shoes?
And why is that the answer? Why are we supposed to suck it up every time our heart yearns for something different? I’d rather acknowledge the moments that pain me so I can find a better fit.
I no longer care who’d love to be in my shoes. It’s a harsh statement. I know. I’m only mildly exaggerating. But I can’t remain squeezed into a space that feels all wrong simply because someone else would love to take my place.
I’d rather go search for a new pair of shoes.