I’m all sappy about my shoes today. These are my first and only pair of cycling shoes. I really hate to say it, but it’s almost (not QUITE yet…) time to retire them. They’ve been good to me, but these pups are worn out.
These shoes have gone many thousands of miles. They’ve traveled far, scraped a lot of cement, endured three years of pushing and pulling.
These shoes have crossed 24 states. They’ve seen the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, the Great Lakes.
They are the silent collectors of memories from each road. I like that when I look in the crevasses, I can’t identify what state the pebbles are from. But I do know that for months, they held on to the tar of Texas, reminding me of specific memories. I’m sure there’s other weird stuff in there. It’s the weird stuff that makes them meaningful. Even when I stepped in poop outside the van on our training ride this year. I don’t know what that means, I just remembered it and thought it should be included because these shoes have been around for funny stuff too.
In college, I would ride to school and usually forget to pack other shoes, so I’d wear these around all day. People gave me compliments on them, and I’d always think, “Since when are velcro and ratchet straps stylish?” But they were right…they are pretty cool.
In my accident, the EMT couldn’t figure out how to take them off of me in the ambulance. Tricky kicks. It’s one of the more amusing memories from that ambulance trip. Then, they sat patiently in a bin until I could ride again.
They’ve been through so much with me that they’ve become a symbol of hope. And now every time I look down, I remember why I ride and that every pedal stroke really is delivering a bit of hope. Everywhere we go, it’s ultimately to proclaim that the good news is stronger than the bad.
There is hope. Always.
Isaiah 52:7 How beautiful on the mountains are the feet (I’d like to add “the shoes”!) of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”