Key Word:- CONSIDER
Title:- Exploding Toes & Dancing Expletives
No evil shall befall you, Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you, To keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.
An enduring image from my childhood is that of my dancing and cursing father. The most dangerous place in our house was the hearth; a raised bricked enamel tiled area, surrounding the ever roaring fire. Its oblong shape always presented toe sharp corners to any traveller making their way across the carpet. Often wearing only his old socks after a long days work, my father would rise from his chair and step towards the door leading to the kitchen. That angular precipice would often then embed itself into his tired little toes. Then the wild dancing fun would begin with all the accompanying fireworks of many exploding expletives that I had not heard before! For the onlooker there is something hilarious about seeing a person stub his toe, but for the practitioner there is both pain and embarrassment.
I don’t know, but there is something interesting about toe stubbing isn’t there? It speaks somewhat of a lack of spatial awareness: “why didn’t they see that coming?”: It speaks of some stupidity: “why weren’t they wearing shoes?!” And lastly and most intriguingly, it shows us what fireworks are piled up like dry tinder on the inside of a seemingly settled person. The stubbing of the toe seems to release a lot of pent up fury that can be stored up within an individual, that’s right, watch it, it’s not just the pain and the accompanying embarrassment that bursts out of impacted little piggies, but residual anger, even pent up fury, that hitches a ride upon the exploding toes and the dancing expletives.
I suppose it’s true that any disproportionate response to stimuli of any kind needs investigating, needs examining, needs contemplating, for friend, how many times have you sat down after a surprise storm caused eruptions in your heart and venting through your vocal chords and you shook your head and said, “my goodness where on earth did that come from?” Our text today is concerned with the practices and protections of ‘He that dwells in the shadow of the Almighty.’ The tempting of Jesus by the devil in the New Testament (see Matt 4:6, Luke 4:10) is clearly indicative that this particular passage has direct application to Jesus Himself. However, we followers of Jesus are those who also seek to dwell in the shadow of the Almighty, making Him our refuge and ever present abiding place. In this respect then, the whole of Psalm 91, especially the toe stubbing part, can also be taken to ourselves. So much so, that we can say that those magnificent creatures, those morning stars of God are also concerned about the protection of our feet! This is not a joke; this is not a little thing. Gross embarrassments, the dropping of those precious things we carry, injury to the rest of the body, danger and deadly disease, can all result from a good stub of our toe and so, the very angels of God Almighty are there to assist us in this not happening! Think about that, and do you know that this pedialogical duty is not a punishment for angels either, but it is for them the highest of callings, for it seems that Jesus Himself is very concerned about our feet and our toes.
Let me ask you just two questions today then.
First, have you ‘stubbed your toe’ recently? Why? Have you removed yourself from abiding in Jesus, have you removed yourself from the shadow of the Almighty? Have you maybe even exasperated a few angels with your wayward walking? Why have you stubbed your toe dear friend?
Second, when you did this, what came out of your heart when the pain came into your being? What leapt on the rising expletives from your heart through your mouth and exposed themselves to the light?
If you’ve stubbed your toe today, then the brokenness on the outside and then the revealed brokenness on the inside both need taken to Jesus, in whose tender hands your feet shall be lovingly washed and cared for and your heart expertly dealt with and massaged into strength and wholeness once more. Today then be sure to take your stubbed little toes and your broken feet to the hands of Jesus where your way will be restored in Him.
Listen:- “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honour him. With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation.” Psalm 91:14-16
Pray: - Jesus, from the extremities of my being to the centre of my soul, heal me Lord O heal me, heal me and make me whole, in Your great name I ask it. Amen.