Faith musings from the seat of a forklift.
Something just fell over. Time to jump off the forklift and help clean it up. Looks like that bag of flour is ripped. Looks like we’ll need to tape it up and make an OS&D notation on the split sheet. That guy on door 72 needs help pushing that long piece in over that household goods crate, better give him a hand. Yard boss says he needs help, best grab the hard hat and get out there. Sound familiar? It should. If you have experienced this, then you know all too well what it means to be boots on the floor. You have been the jack in the hole who is able to handle almost any task necessary during daily operations, and you’ve probably been there for a long time.
However, as one who has been there, it can get tiring after a time. Indeed, it almost always seems that something is getting damaged or somebody needs help with something. There may even be times in which it would seem that you are being picked on because you are generally the first person to be asked to go and assist in an otherwise unpleasant task. Oddly, you may not realize this, but because you have usually been willing to assist with these unpleasant tasks, you have become one of the more valuable employees in the company.
Ironically, the Gospel of Matthew, we read of Jesus telling his disciples to “pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” Soon there after, Jesus grants the twelve authority over demons and diseases. In effect, Jesus was calling upon them to serve as boots on the floor. He was preparing them to serve as witnesses of his Gospel. To this end, the twelve would become quite important in terms of the early history of the Christian church.
The twelve would become the initial messengers of the Gospel, the boots on the floor. With the exception of Iscariot, who would be replaced with another who had been there from the beginning, the twelve would be there to witness his ascension and then they would be present at Pentecost, which is the birthday of the church. Indeed, they were very much the boots on the floor. Today, they are held in high regard by Christians of all denominations and referred to as the early saints of the church.
Just was the disciples were willing to follow Jesus as his initial boots on the floor messengers, so too should we be willing to be boots on the floor. When we are willing to do what is needed, either in our work or when sharing the Gospel, we are also the boots on the floor. It may not be the most glamorous of positions, it costs most of the disciples their lives, but it is highly important. Yes, it is difficult and you may feel entirely unappreciated, but stand firm to the end and you will be rewarded. In this life, that reward may be little more than some additional respect from your supervisors and peers, but the eternal reward will be life in the kingdom of God.
Whether to share gospel or to get the freight out, we should all be willing to be boots on the floor. Sitting at a desk doesn’t necessarily move freight as you are not really seeing it. Nor can it necessarily help share the gospel as you are not directly interacting with another person. It is only by being up close, boots on floor, can either really happen.
Whether we are moving freight or sharing the gospel, please us to be boots on the floor in doing what we must. May your glory shine and your will be done. In Jesus holy name. Amen.