Shoes for Christmas

I never thought God cared about the shoes I wore until one recent Christmas.  A few weeks before Christmas, I felt God prompting me to ask Him for the desires of my heart. He had revealed to me that I really only asked Him for the basic necessities, and He challenged me to ask Him for not just what I would interpret as a “need” but for things that were “wants.” This was difficult for me since I have traveled all over the world and seen people in abject poverty. I felt guilty asking God for things that I wanted when others seemed to only have the basic necessities.  However, at this moment, God was asking me to do something, and the conversation was between me and Him, not me, Him and the Third World.

So, I decided to ask Him for something that I wanted but didn’t necessarily need.  I asked Him for shoes. I asked Him out of obedience and I really only half-heartedly believed He was actually listening; however, a few days later, I got a major confirmation that He does hear me. Keep in mind, I told no one about my prayer for shoes. Frankly, I was a little ashamed and still feeling guilty that I had prayed that prayer. I went to church one Sunday in December, and a friend of mine came in carrying a tiny box for me.  When I opened it, there was a note inside along with a gift card. As I began to read the note, I was in shock. The entire note was an encouraging word for me about how God wanted to give me new shoes and that I was going to be walking in new areas of His authority in the coming year.  Along with the note, was a $150 gift card for a shoe store in the area.

When I asked my friend what prompted her to give me this extravagant gift, she said that a few days before, she was shopping for shoes, and as she walked into the shoe store, she clearly heard God say to her “I want Tara to have new shoes too.”  She said that prompting was so strong that she bought my gift card before even getting her own shoes. She had made this purchase on or around the day I half-heartedly prayed for new shoes.

What did God want me to learn from this? That He was some genie in a bottle and I could ask Him for my wishes? No. There are plenty of times, I have asked for things and haven’t gotten them. I believe, in this scenario, He was simply teaching me to ask, teaching me to trust, teaching me to have faith in a God who loves me and knows what’s best for me.

What was the fruit of this lesson? I learned to ASK more often. Not just for myself, but for others too. After the shoe blessing, I asked Him to provide for a mission trip to Thailand. And, as a result, within one month of getting my shoes, God provided almost $4000 for me to spend one month in Thailand ministering in the red light district there. The same God who gave me new shoes that I didn’t need, sent me to those in greatest need. I’m sure they were on His heart when He was teaching me to ASK.

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