But how are they to call on one in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in one of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone to proclaim him? And how are they to proclaim him until they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
Do you consider your feet to be beautiful? Are you comfortable exposing them to public view? How do you feel about having others touch or massage your feet? Judging by the response to most Maundy Thursday foot washing worship experiences, I’d have to surmise that the majority of us definitely don’t see our feet as beautiful. Most folks don’t like to expose their feet for others to view, much less touch. Yet in this week’s reading from Romans, we find Paul quoting Isaiah (52:7) and extolling the beauty of the feet of the messenger.
Maybe it’s time we took a closer look at our feet, getting beyond the hammer toes and bunions, the rough soles and the ingrown toenails. Perhaps it’s time to see our feet from God’s perspective through the lens of Isaiah and Paul: as tools of the messenger, as foundational to carrying the good news into all the earth. Yes, it’s time to take feet seriously for the role they play in our effort to be stewards of the gifts of God and the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Feet are quite fascinating, and here are a few foot facts to prove it. Did you know that one fourth of all the bones in the human body are located in the feet? Have you heard you feet mirror your general health, and conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, and circulatory disorders can show initial signs in the feet? Here’s my favorite foot fact: in an average day the feet endure the cumulative force of several hundred tons.
So even though feet are lowly in stature, our feet are pretty important–no matter what they look like or smell like, for that matter. Feet keep us grounded and support us. Our feet are made for locomotion, for walking, and they’re ideal for getting us from place to place (especially with today’s gas prices!). Feet are useful. Feet are functional. Feet are beautiful when they’re used in service to God.
Yes, the key to beautiful feet lies in their use. Our feet should be active to the best of our ability. Use your feet to gather with your worshipping community to praise God and find strength for the discipleship journey. Use your feet to visit those who are sick, in prison, and new to your community. Use your feet to show solidarity and support by participating in Crop Walk or Ecumenical Advocacy Days. Use your feet to walk, jog, or other forms of exercise to be a good steward of your health and well-being. Use your feet to help others through disaster response teams or Habitat for Humanity. Let your feet carry you to global mission events or even to serve in short or long term mission projects around the world.
Yes indeed, beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news! Be good stewards of your beautiful feet and use them well. Allow your faithful feet to carry you into service and mission in the name of Christ, and ponder these words from an African proverb: “When you pray, move your feet.”
Foot facts from http://www.drsown.com/Feet_Facts/feet_facts.html
Copyright (c) 2008, The Rev. Sharron Lucas, all rights reserved. Used by permission.