“He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” Psalm 40:2
In the middle of a lonely stretch of open road along a rural South Dakota interstate highway stands a billboard advertisement for an independently-owned full-service filling station, located just off a nearby exit. Painted in big black letters is the sign’s bold statement: “24-Hour Toe Service.” Clearly, the owner’s intention is to advertise auto service – to assist stranded travelers whose broken-down vehicles are in need of a tow and repair.
The accidental misspelling gave me the giggles as I drove by on the way to my parents’ farm. I wondered how many motorists had shared the same reaction. How would the mechanic respond if I were to pull in to the station and ask the price of a pedicure? One look at my piggies and he would surely declare that I was in need of some major toe service! And he might forewarn me that a full 24 hours may be needed to perform the repairs, too. (Okay, actually, he would probably just roll his eyes at this silly woman’s question and go back to his work.)
My mind drifted as I drove on… Yes, my toes sure could use some repair. While a good polish job to the outside might improve their appearance, much the same as it would to an automobile, the inside of my toes’ “mechanics,” if you will, is often broken-down. Structurally my toes are in adequate working order. They provide balance, enabling me to stand up, walk, and even run – to function on my feet. In a different way, however, my “walk” is often anything but balanced. On my own, my toes and I stumble through too many commitments, sink in the mud and mire of poor priorities, and tip over with busyness. I fail to stand up for my faith on too many occasions or walk in the Word on others. Yes, my out-of-balance toes and I need a full-service fix. In fact, we need a complete overhaul!
Faster than a tow truck can reach my car, my Savior reaches out to me, giving me His always-available, 24-hour full repair service. When Jesus suffered in my place, dying on the cross for my poor priorities, my failures, and my lack of balance, He made the best and boldest statement, not painted on a sign, but spoken from His lips: “It is finished.” (John 19:30) My sins are forgiven. Once broken-down, I am fully repaired in Christ! As the Psalmist says, “He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” His full-service filling stations – worship and the Word – fuel me with faith and fill me with the Spirit! Because God is in the business of providing perfect, full repair service, He alone can give me a firm place to stand on the Rock of Christ and enable me to find my balance in Him, teaching me to sidestep poor priorities and retrace my steps, helping me determine which of my many commitments are really necessary. His Spirit empowers me to stand strong in my faith and walk closely with Him.
Look down at your piggies. Are they (are you) in need of toe service? Yep. And you, too, have received a complete overhaul in Christ! As the Lord leads you into the Word and worship, trust that He is continually fueling you and filling you, enabling you to stand firm, beautifully balanced on the Rock.