The Shoemaker's Dream
One of the most beautiful of all Christmas stories was told by the
American poet, Edwin Markham, about a cobbler, a godly man who made
shoes in the old days. One night the cobbler dreamed the next day Jesus
was coming to visit him. The dream seemed so real the cobbler got up
very early the next morning and hurried to the woods, where he gathered
green boughs to decorate his shop for the arrival of so great a Guest.
The cobbler waited all morning, but to his disappointment, his shop
remained quiet, except for an old man who limped up to the door asking
to come in for a few minutes of warmth. While the man was resting, the
cobbler noticed that the old fellow's shoes were worn through. Touched,
the cobbler took a new pair from his shelves and saw to it that the
stranger was wearing them as he went on his way. Throughout the
afternoon the cobbler waited, but his only visitor was an elderly woman.
He had seen her struggling under a heavy load of firewood, and he
invited her, too, into his shop to rest. Then he discovered that for two
days she had had nothing to eat; he saw to it she had a nourishing meal
before she went on her way. As night began to fall, the cobbler heard a
child crying outside his door. The child was lost and afraid. The
cobbler went out, soothed the youngster's tears, and with the little
hand in his, took the child home. When he returned, the cobbler was sad.
He was convinced that while he had been away he had missed the visit of
his Lord. Now he lived through the moments as he had imagined them: the
knock, the latch lifted, the radiant face, the offered cup. He would
have kissed the hands where the nails had been, washed the feet where
the spikes had entered. Then the Lord would have sat and talked to him.
In his anguish, the cobbler cried out, "Why is it, Lord, that Your
feet delay. Have you forgotten that this was the day?" Then, soft
in the silence a voice he heard: "Lift up your heart for I kept My
word. Three times I came to your friendly door; Three times My shadow
was on your floor. I was the man with the bruised feet. I was the woman
you gave food to eat, I was the child on the homeless street."
Title: The Shoemaker's Dream
Data Source: Fredericksburg Church of Christ, 507 N. Llano St.,
Fredericksburg TX 78624, http://www.fbg-church.org/
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