It started with the footprints leading through last night's snow, right up to my door. They tell about a young woman who came in late from a long day in Ottawa, wide spread deep footprints because she does not walk if she can run.
I wandered out on to the road side and there along the ditch were large dog-like footprints but no master's boot prints along side. They trailed the road side a while and then headed off into a field. Likely a coyote out for a midnight stroll.
There were dozens of footprints along the corner to a side street. Although the children were already gone, I could imagine them waiting in the -12 celsius cold for a bus.
Along one of the driveways there were clear footprints leading to a home. Big boots. Some night worker dropped off from a job, eager to go inside to bed. And on the other side of the same driveway, car tracks and high heel prints coming from the house. Wife on her way to work.
I focused for my whole walk on the different signs of who had been there and I thought about it. Just as our footprints leave evidence for others of what has been, our words and our actions hang in the air as well.
In the Book of Samuel in the Bible, Samuel is told by God to anoint a king. He judges by what his eye sees, but God knows the truth. He sees the heart.
1 Samuel 16:7
But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
God knew that David's brothers were not the men He wanted for king. He could see the heart.
As we go through life, we leave 'footprints'. God sees them and others do too. People can tell who we really are by the kind of prints we leave behind. Are we kind? Do we cover up sin? Do we treat others with respect? Do we care about others needs? Do we put God first? We leave a 'footprint' with each person we come into contact with. We leave an even bigger footprint with God because He knows our hearts.
Pay a little more attention to what you leave behind. Someone else is reading it.