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What Was I Thinking?

We went to a Maundy Thursday service
yesterday – the service in the church calendar that
celebrates the Last Supper, and Christ’s act of washing His
disciples’ feet. As we’ve been church shopping in our
new city, we’ve looked for places that find new and
interesting ways of bringing the familiar stories to life –
new ways of celebrating what we’ve heard over and over again.
And one of the churches we’d visited previously was doing a
service woven around a meal and the foot-washing. Sounded
interesting, so we headed over.

The evening started in the back of the
sanctuary, where huge tables were set up for the meal and a buffet
arranged across one end. As people began to arrive and mill around,
we looked for a sign the service was going to start. We kept seeing
activity in one corner, and finally realized that the foot-washing
had already begun. The church was trying to keep it in the order
the original Last Supper was written about, so they were offering
the foot-washing before the meal or official service began.
Participation was purely voluntary, but we all enjoy this aspect of
our Christian life- being served in such a humbling and intimate
way, often by total strangers – so we began removing our
shoes and socks.

Maddie joined in with gusto – she’d been begging to
take her shoes off since we’d come in the room, which is
normal for her since she’s used to removing shoes in the
home. With Maddie and Daddy’s feet bare, they headed over to
the foot-washing while Cora and I held down the fort.

Sixty seconds later, Brian was back, with a crying and over-wrought
Madeleine clinging to him like a leech. We’d made every
effort to explain what was going on and why, but she simply
didn’t get it until she saw it in action: strangers are going
to come and touch your bare feet.

Now keep in mind that this is the girl for whom I do all my
shoe-shopping online, since she refuses to take her shoes off in a
store. Not only that, but I had to buy a home foot-measuring kit
since she will kick and scream if a stranger attempts to touch or
inspect her feet. Even at the doctor she’ll beg to put her
socks back on as soon as the weighing is over.

I have no idea where this comes from, but I feel like an idiot for
not having anticipated it last night. Obviously the shoes and socks
went right back on pronto, and Maddie was soon right as rain
– she recovered so well that she graciously offered an
impromptu concert of “Angels We Have Heard On High” for
the entire table (of strangers) while attempting to use her booster
seat as a stage. But I’ve got to get her over the foot thing
before summer and pool time comes.

Or we’re in for a very long summer. I wonder if our community
pool lets her wear water shoes?


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