Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Strength of Our Feet

I woke up this morning feeling absolutely horrid.

That, in itself is nothing new. Since Abby started nursery school last month, we've become the House of the Damned, going from one illness to the next. I understand the whole "you need to stay home when you're sick so you don't spread it to everyone else" courtesy, but we're to the point that if we did that, we are never, ever leaving this house until Spring. A quick check confirmed no one has fevers (because that does merit staying out of public), and off to Mass we go.

Naturally, we were late for Mass, so we sat at the very, very, very back of the church. The building is over 100 years old, so while the acoustics are not terrible thanks to modern wonder of amplification, they're not great. I'm struggling to hear the priest over the noise of my less-than-happy-to-be-there-this-morning children. Plus, I'm still figuring out his very-thick African accent.*

The priest raises his hands in prayer, and prays for the strength of our feet. I'm sure I had a weird look on my face until I realized he was praying for the strength of our faith, and not our feet.

I giggled inwardly to myself at my silly mistake, but stopped suddenly at a revelation. Sometimes it is about the strength of our feet. Not necessarily our physical feet, but about our ability to keep going, keep taking the next step, and to keep putting on foot in front of another, so to speak.

My husband and I have had moments in our life together when the only thing we have is the strength of our feet. During the December when Abby was diagnosed with Infantile Spasms. During the long, dark days of January when Abby was in the depths of the ACTH. When she relapsed and ended up in the hospital again. When we got her diagnosis of Autism. Even the days early in my pregnancy with Rachael when I started bleeding, and I thought that I was going to lose her.

Even my friends, there are a few in mind that have had a less-than-stellar year. Yet they keep putting one foot in front of another, and keep going. The strength of their feet is the only thing that keeps them going from one moment to the next.

It's our ability to keep going, to keep putting one foot in front of another, that sees us though. It's something we need to do no matter what path God has set us on.

I think I will pray for both the strength of my faith and the strength of my feet.

* Growing up, I had a teacher who was from Africa. I loved listening to him speak, the gentle lilt of his voice, and the way certain words rolled off his tongue. The catch was, of course, that we were all speaking French. As a result, I have never met a French-speaking African native that I can't understand. However, according to my brain, English is a whole other ballgame. I seem to have to re-learn the intricacies of their unique pronunciations with each new person I meet.