Tiny footprints. Soft, tender skin. Kissable. Adorable as they kick and work the legs they are connected to. We see them wobble when they stand to gain their balance. Feet grow, walk, run, and jump. They kick a ball or jump a rope, dance, swim, climb. They carry us across the stage at graduation, and through the door of our first job, and may even carry us down the aisle to wed our sweetheart. For some, their feet carry them to the doctor because new baby feet kick and push inside their belly and the cycle begins again. Where do those little feet go? Where do we lead them? Where do they lead others?
“So, after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them know ye what I have done to you? You call me Master and Lord and you say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example that you should do as I have done to you.” As Jesus was our example, we are to be examples to others.
Especially to our children.
When I was a kid, my mama taught us to use our toes to pick up things on the floor, or in the yard. My siblings and I made a game of it to see who could pick up the smallest item using their feet. (I was able to pick up a small gold safety pin.)
I taught my kids to play this silly game when trying to get them to pick up their room. It worked, at least for a while. They challenged themselves and each other to pick up small items like marbles, crayons, Barbie shoes, and jacks. Thank goodness, these things didn’t have to go into the vacuum cleaner. As they got older, the kids would use their toes to pick up their socks, shorts, and other items on the floor in their room. It was fun to pass the trick on to my children. My grandchildren use this trick today.
What else do they learn from us?
Kids follow our examples. Jesus taught us to love and serve with His example. What does our example teach to our children? Parents aren’t the only one’s children follow. What about their peers, the media, their environment. Are our children leading by example? What are they teaching their siblings and peers? Maybe they are teaching you. I’ve learned a lot from my children. (As well as from my own poor example).
I look at these old feet of mine and think of all the miles they’ve walked, uphill and down, hot pavement and hot sand, rocky and smooth roads. I think of the creeks they’ve crossed and the rivers they swam in. The steps they’ve climbed and the grass they’ve felt between their toes. They’ve stepped on sticker burrs and have been pierced by rusty nails. These feet have been invaded by heel spurs, bunions and ganglion cysts, gout, and fallen arches, muscle cramps and restless legs. They’ve gone from wearing cute little red high heels to wearing “sensible shoes.”
These feet are tired, but still, they carry me. They may even be ugly feet—to our eyes. However, in God’s eyes, we can have beautiful feet when we share the good news of His peace, love and forgiveness. When we lead by HIS example.
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation,
who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” Isaiah 52:7
And quoted by Paul in Romans 10:15 “…As it is written, how beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things.”
How do your feet measure up? Mine need a foot washing by Jesus.
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