My shoes and I are back from our Louisiana trip. It was my Keen Whispers first time to be out of Fort Smith and out of state. They are the most comfortable pair of shoes I have ever owned and since my hip surgery they are a true godsend. I have a thing about shoes. We become friends. When I have to throw away a pair of shoes because they are worn out, it isn’t easy. I think of all the places we’ve visited and what a support they’ve been. Once I buried a pair of shoes in St. Louis because it seemed more reverent to bury them than to throw them into some unknown dumpster away from home.
Walking is a necessary and important part of one’s health. What kind of shoes you wear while walking makes all the difference in the world. In an article I once read about the spirituality of walking the author said, Never trust a thought that doesn’t come from walking. Perhaps that is a bit of hyperbole but I like it. I have walked my way into stories and poems. I have walked my way into acceptance and forgiveness--into gratitude and inspiration--into understanding and trust. My walks are generally not the super strenuous kind but more of a contemplative stroll. It is almost autumn and I am thinking about the fallen leaves my Keen Whispers and I will crunch through. Perhaps, if we can find the time, we will do a bit of lounging in the hammock in the pine grove. There are times when we take a prayerful walk through our labyrinth. That’s what I call Soul Walking. There are so many ways to pray with your feet.
This morning as I sat under my sycamore tree I prayed about my feet (and my shoes) reflecting on some of the places we’ve journeyed. I even went back to my childhood, remembering how difficult it was for mom and dad to buy us shoes at all. I prayed about the people today who would love to have the pair of shoes I buried in St. Louis because they need them, worn soles and all. And I prayed about your feet too, whoever you are—reading this blog: I hope you will always have someone in your life to massage your feet. I hope that the places your shoes carry you will be filled with adventure and inspiration. May you have happy feet.
In a few days my Keen Whispers and I will travel to Little Rock for a Eucharist and conference, celebrating the jubilees of the Sisters in our diocese. Their next trip will be to California. We get around.
Become a disciple of joy! Massage someone’s feet this week. Choose someone weary who needs a bit of encouragement.