I realize my post yesterday was rather firm. While I cannot help but be serious, that is my nature, I can however choose a lighter topic for today. I want to talk about feet.
I bet when you read this title you thought i was going to use being barefoot as an analogy for some great spiritual topic. I am not.
God made us without shoes.
Seriously, he really did. I know this will come as a surprise for many of you. You have worn shoes since the day you were born, and they have become a staple for you. I am willing to bet you cannot even imagine going a day without them. I agree warm feet can be quite intoxicating, but I must say, I feel much better without them
Yes, if I had a choice, I would only wear them in the snow. I would walk around the department store barefoot, go to the mall barefoot, go out to eat barefoot, even go to Mass barefoot!
Let me hearken back, way, way back to the beginning of things. Adam and Eve were barefoot. It was a result of eating from the tree that God made clothes for them. While it is not explicit, I would say that God did not include shoes in his wardrobe choice. Why would he take so beautiful a creation as the foot, and then shield it from what it was made for, contact with the dirt?
Maybe you think I’m silly. Well let me show you! After Adam, God keeps an eye on things, giving language and making floods and such, but for most of history, he is a behind the scenes kind of guy. Then comes Moses.
“When the LORD saw that he had turned aside to look, God called out to him from the bush: Moses! Moses! He answered, “Here I am.”God said: Do not come near! Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground. I am the God of your father, he continued, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.” Exodus 3:4-6
That’s right. Sandals were evil, and even not allowed in God’s presence. Okay, maybe it would have been clearer if he said, “Taketh those shoes of evil and cast them off thy feet!” but I think we can all agree that is clearly what he meant. Alright, no, he didn’t mean that, but still, shouldn’t we cast them off anyways, just in case?
Now I must handle some objections. First, hygiene. If I walked into a standard restaurant barefoot, I would be kicked out. Not because of any actual health violation, (there are no such health laws in any of our United States, county laws may vary) but because of a perceived health risk. What risk is this exactly? Spreading germs and disease? Maybe my bare feet are tracking in all sorts of nasty stuff, right?
So, when was the last time you washed the soles of your shoes? I wash my feet every day in the shower, so I would bet my entire fortune that the bottoms of my feet are far cleaner then the bottoms of your shoes. That is one of the reasons nurses and doctors have to wear foot coverings when they go into surgery. I hope my doctor is barefoot as well.
“Bare feet are less safe, you could stub your toe or something.” you say, but again, I think bare feet are far safer. With my feet uncovered, I watch every step I take. It’s when I put on shoes that I run around clod hopping with no attention. I have never stubbed my feet then they are bare, except around the house where I am running around not paying attention. But more then that, when your feet are flexing and bending the way they are supposed to, you would be amazed of the effect on the rest of your body. When you walk barefoot, you naturally walk the way you are supposed to, on the balls of your feet, near your toes. No more jarring the bones in your legs = no more back pain. I’m serious, if your back hurts, start by taking off your shoes.
God doesn’t make junk. Feet were made for walking. Sure you may have to walk slow for a while, or wear light sandals or something while you get used to it, but I’m telling you, it’s worth it. They even make shoes now to try to emulate the barefoot walk. I don’t really like any of them, but for the sake of social compliance I wear them when I must.
Lord, I pray that you show me the day when everyone is using the feet you gave them the way you intended. (Especially my wife who just thinks I’m silly!)