Roger Alford

Maybe you remember the story about the grasshopper and the centipede who had plans to go jogging one morning.

The centipede was a no-show. So, the grasshopper went to his house and knocked on his door. The centipede didn’t come out.

The grasshopper started ringing the doorbell again and again. Still the centipede didn’t answer.

Then, the grasshopper started yelling through a window: “Get out here. It’s time to jog.”

Finally, the centipede opened the door, telling the grasshopper, “Stop with all the shouting. I had to get my shoes tied.”

I suppose it would take a while to tie that many sneakers.

Working a job that requires lots of sitting, I have to run a good bit on my off hours to try to stay healthy. And I’ve learned over the years the wisdom of tying my laces in double knots. That way they don’t come untied while I’m running.

Some years ago, when I was a reporter covering government and politics, a group of us who worked in the Capitol would compete in a long-distance race every year. Most of us were average runners just trying to keep our blood pressure and cholesterol in check. A win for us was simply crossing the finish line.

But one of the young ladies from the Capitol was quite the runner. I recall her disappointment when she missed out on a medal simply because she had to stop to re-tie one of her shoelaces. It only took a few short seconds to do that. Turned out she lost by those few short seconds.

Preparing for the race by double-knotting those laces would have meant victory.

You know the Bible tells us in a number of places the importance of being prepared. The book of Proverbs offers numerous reminders of that, pointing us even to the busy little ants who work like crazy to be prepared for wintertime. The Apostle Paul told Timothy to always be prepared to preach the gospel. And Jesus, during his public ministry, told us to be prepared for His return.

For that centipede, getting prepared took a great deal of effort. He was probably worn out by the time he was ready. But Jesus made the preparation for His return much easier. All we have to do is repent and surrender our hearts and lives to Him. He’ll do the rest.

Listen to what the scriptures tell us:

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).

“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Romans 10:9).

You see that? Being prepared for Jesus is easier than tying your shoes.


Reach Roger Alford at (502) 514-6857 or

Recommended for you