Don’t judge a foot by the shoe

By Jimmy Cochran


I’m a shoe lover. My family always makes comments about how many pairs of shoes I have in my closet and on the shelves in my closet and under my bed and on the floor around the house. In my defense, I do occasionally bag some of my shoes up and take them to Goodwill, however, I usually stop by the store on the way home and replace them. I think I need an intervention, especially because the shoes I like are not the inexpensive generic shoes. Oh no, I go for the name brand top of the line shoes.

I look at what shoes people are wearing and if they grab my attention, I’ll head to the store in a couple of days and do some browsing. The problem with this is that I also look at the people wearing the shoes and judge whether I want “that look.”

My sister told me the other day that she looked under the tables at the ladies in her Bible Study group to see what kind of shoes they are wearing. Many of her group are from affluent lifestyles and my sister was surprised by what type of shoes they were wearing. Of course, they probably are wondering why my sister always has her head under the table instead of paying attention to the study. Yeah, the two of us are very much alike.

“Why, they are just ordinary shoes like I would wear,” she says. “The ladies are all dressed in nice expensive clothes, but they are just wearing scruffy boat shoes, dirty sneakers, generic ®Vans, regular old flats, and once (I think) I saw some bedroom slippers. I figured they would be wearing expensive fancy shoes, but they are just like me.”

How often do we judge people by how they look? By their clothes, their cars, their shoes, the restaurants where they eat, perfect teeth, etc? So, we tend to be intimidated by them and think they are “better” than we are because they have certain physical possessions or attributes that we do not have. It’s human nature to compare ourselves to others. However, it is not God’s nature. He makes it clear to us through His Word that we are not to compare ourselves to others because God made us just as He wanted.

“Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else.” (Galatians 6:4)

So, if we think about what God says about not looking at the outward appearance of others because God only cares about the inside…. what business do we have doing any different? We don’t know what their lives are not seen. We may only see the happy family out at the restaurant and wish our family could be so happy…but, we didn’t see the 30-minute screaming match that occurred before they got to the restaurant. We only see a tiny sliver of someone’s “seemingly perfect” life on Facebook or other social media without knowing what’s going on outside that sliver of a look.

It’s a dangerous thing for us to compare ourselves to other people, because God wants us to look only to Himself and strive to be like Jesus. He was born human, lived human and died human. And through it all, Jesus remained the same “yesterday, today and tomorrow.” He never changes. (Hebrews 13:8). He is our point of comparison and we will never, ever feel inadequate again.

And for today my friends, this has been the gospel according to Jimmy.

Jimmy Cochran is a resident of McDonough, a musician, a minister and the author of Being God’s and Staying God’s, both available at Being God’s is also available at Moye’s Pharmacy in McDonough.