God’s Cleats
By Rachel Olsen

“Wisdom and money can get you almost anything, but only wisdom can save your life.” Ecclesiastes 7:12 (NLT)

My husband grew up with a single mother, and very little money. In high school, Rick wanted to try out for track and field – he dreamed of running fast and long, and throwing a javelin. The problem was he didn’t have the right shoes, and couldn’t afford them. Thank God for good friends and a kind coach.

J.T. was a close friend of Rick’s. One day J.T. invited Rick over to his house and said, “Try these running shoes on. They just don’t fit my feet right and I’ll never wear them.” Rick wasn’t sure if J.T. was telling the truth, but the shoes fit him fine. Those shoes helped Rick qualify for the state meet in the 800 meter race.

Running shoes allowed Rick to run much faster than his old sneakers would, but he would slip and slide in them while trying to throw the javelin. One day after practice, Rick’s coach called him over and held up a big box of cleats. He said, “Here’s some unclaimed shoes students left in their lockers at the end of the school year. Find your size if you can.” Rick found some that fit and the cleats made all the difference. Even the “crunching” sound they made on the track sent shivers of confidence and purpose up Rick’s spine. Rick discovered it’s much easier to strive for the goal when your footing is secure.

Many athletes dream of standing atop a podium during an awards ceremony with gold medals around their necks. For most, it will take talent, hard work, plus some money to get there. But there is an ornament even more valuable than a gold medal. Proverbs 3:21-23 reveals:
“My son, preserve sound judgment and discernment, do not let them out of your sight; they will be life for you, an ornament to grace your neck. Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble.”

Sound judgment and discernment are the medals we receive when we walk in wisdom. Money can take you places, for sure, but it can only take you so far. And it can only provide a measure of security. Wisdom is the footwear each of us needs to run the race God has set before us. Wisdom will help us make the important trek from this world into eternity.

When we walk in His wisdom – God’s cleats – He promises us solid footing. He does not promise a road that is always flat, or a route that is easy to run, but He promises us solid footing no matter the terrain. Wisdom, defined as a proper respect for the Lord, provides the ultimate security – it will save your life. Money can’t do that.

Rick went on to compete successfully in high school track, and also on his college cross-country team. He went on to gain godly wisdom as well. I’m so thankful for the friends and coaches that ensured Rick had what he needed to run his best.

God ensures – through the Bible, His followers, and His Spirit within us – that we also have all we need to run our best. He equips us to follow hard after Him. No money is necessary to be well heeled in God’s kingdom. Whether we’re wearing nursing shoes, work boots, high heels, hand-me-downs, or flip-flops, we can walk securely by walking in the wisdom that is from above.

Dear Lord, grant me wisdom and sure footing as I follow after You. Whatever my path, I trust You and Your principals are able to keep me from slipping today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Him?

If you’d like some “coaching” in reading the Bible, visit Rachel Olsen’s blog

The Busy Mom’s Guide to Bible Study by Lisa Whelchel

What Happens When Women Walk in Faith by Lysa TerKeurst

Application Steps:
Consider what you usually walk in… fear? anger? depression? doubt? discontentment? a big hurry?

Who in your life can coach you in the ways of wisdom?

Who can help you “find your size” and follow after Him?

Power Verses:
Proverbs 4:7, “Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment.” (NIV)

Proverbs 2:6, “For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” (NLT)


Thank God for those along the way who also help with our equipping! Their willingness to come alongside, as they did with your husband in his time of need, speaks volumes to me about the provision of God to get us to our best.

Thanks for sharing...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

We serve an awesome God. As I look back at my life and God's way of preparing me for ministry, I stand amazed at the people he put in my life, the Word that he put before me, and knowing that he is always with us. There are times we all can question our calls and why we in the place we are in life, but we can always rest assured He is always looking out for us. How awesome He is!

Blogger Melissa said...

Daily inspiration has kept me strong as I live my life with my wonderful family. One such book that I have been enjoying is Trail Thoughts: A Daily Companion for the Journey of Faith. Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. (Jeremiah 6:16)

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