I’m a Texan. Born and raised. I love it here. Although I’m hardly a full-fledged cowgirl, I can appreciate a classic country song, a juicy steak, and a worn in pair of boots. Recently I learned of a place in Fort Worth that has been making handmade custom boots for four generations: M.L. Leddy’s. Their website claims they have set the standard in handmade western boots “with the finest leathers and materials, decades of craftsmanship, uncompromised quality and unsurpassed fit.”
Those who want the full “Leddy’s experience” need to be willing to fork over a pretty penny and come prepared to make a myriad of decisions. This process is not for the indecisive at heart. After all, it’s a custom boot, so you’re responsible for the creation of the entire boot: from design to type of hide to stitch to color to height of heel to shape of toe, etc. Once you’ve picked out exactly what you want your boot to look like, it’s time to be measured. This isn’t your typical shoe measurement with the silver tray and slide that we are used to at Payless. No, at Leddy’s, you sit back in your socks, and an authentic cowboy (complete with a handlebar moustache) measures and records every square inch of your foot.
Now that you’ve finished the process, you can pick up these little gems in time to show them off at Billy Bob’s this weekend, right? Think again. Your custom, handmade boots can take up to a year to be crafted. Why? Because they are made from scratch. A boot artisan will fashion them from strips of leather, wood and stitching to the exact proportions of your foot and custom design. This is no small task. But at the end of that year, when you slip your foot into that boot that was made specifically for your foot, it will have been worth the wait.
Now cowboy boots may not be your thing, and you might even consider this procedure to be a little extravagant, but what I hope you can appreciate here is the custom nature and attention to detail that goes into this process. As young women, it is often hard to be content with what God has for us. Whether it’s the body He gave us, or the personality He wired us with, or the plan He’s mapped out for us, this discontentment emerges from the deep crevices of our hearts. We look to our right and left, at the women around us, and compare our “personal inventory” with theirs. It’s easy to feel envious, insignificant, or insecure.
These comparisons may lead us to question if He loves them more because of what God has for them or how He has made them. We get tangled in the lies and lose sight of what He has for us. It’s as if we’re trying on boot after boot, attempting to make someone else’s fit our foot. We covet the boots that others walk in yet forget that the Bootmaker has put just as much attention and craftsmanship into our own.
Our God is not one of duplication and generic mass-production but a God of detail and craftsmanship (Psalm 139). He has a beautiful, custom pair of boots that He has designed waiting for you. Once I get comfortable with the boots He made for me, I get to walk out differently: assured of His great love for me because of the time and detail He put into my life. It is when my eyes are set on the One who made me that I finally begin to understand how He loves me, and only then, can I walk freely (Galatians 5:1).