Saturday, October 16, 2010

Because Stuff Doesn't Last

Yesterday, the day after his 11th birthday, our youngest son came to me, saying he needed new shoes. Talk about an understatement. (See photo above) I bought him those sneakers last spring. He said he'd be willing to continue to wear his canvas and rubber Chuck Taylor Hi-Tops if I would please just buy him a new pair.

He adored those sneakers. They're marketed as "classic hi-top kicks (that) have remained true to the original Chuck Taylors to give your little one some authentic, old-school style."  When he spied them at the East Brunswick Kohl's last spring, they were a fresh Royal blue. Our basketball-loving boy was delighted to learn that American basketball player Charles Hollis "Chuck" Taylor was also a shoe salesman and that Chuck Taylors are history's best-selling basketball shoes. From daily wear, including on the basketball court, the rubber soles eroded. And now our son's socks (or ankles) are visible from both sides of each sneaker where the canvas wore away.

It is hard sometimes to explain to young ones how the world we inhabit is much less important than the world we hope to inherit. Or how the world we know is younger than the kingdom created for us before time began. Perhaps our son's beloved Chuck Taylors serve as a reminder for him, and for me too, of what Our Lord makes clear in His Sermon on the Mount.

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and decay destroy, and thieves break in and steal. But store up treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor decay destroys."