As shoes for your feet put on whatever will make you ready to proclaim the gospel of peace. (Eph 6:15)
It’s time for me to do some shoe shopping. I’ve been thinking long and hard about the kind of shoes that I will need. They need to be sturdy and reliable because I may have to travel far and will have to use them often. I need something that will help me look and feel confident. I need something that will help me look and feel comfortable. I need shoes that will encourage and empower me to go out and share the Good News.
That’s a tall order for a pair of shoes. But we are told that we need shoes that will make us ready to proclaim the Gospel of peace. Our mission as baptized believers is to spread the Good News, to “make disciples of all nations” (Mt 28:19). We need to rely on our shoes because we are called to witness to our faith every day, in every way, to people from all walks of life. In order to heed our baptismal call, we need to be confident in our faith and in the message of God’s love, mercy, and compassion. The shoes need to be comfortable because we need to be comfortable with the faith we are called to share. We need courage and strength to proclaim the Gospel of peace because it will often go against what the world wants to hear and how people want to live.
But it will not be enough to be a baptized believer wearing the right shoes. The successful proclamation of Gospel and the making of disciples requires that we have peace in our hearts. And do not be fooled—the peace we need and the peace we will proclaim is the peace that only the Lord can give. The peace that the world offers is fleeting and unsatisfying and it will not settle our hearts the way the peace of Christ can and will.
So, consider doing some shoe shopping with me. And when you find just the right pair, say a prayer that your heart might open to the peace of our Lord so that you will be ready to proclaim that peace and work to make disciples of those you meet. This piece of armor, the peace of Christ and the faith to share it, is just one more way that we can protect ourselves in the battles of life.