At His Feet

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who announces peace!

Isaiah 52:7

In prayer, I often find myself at the Lord’s feet. I used to think this would be debasing, but I am drawn there in many moods, and it is my heart that draws me. Sometimes I can’t raise my face to Him. Sometimes I listen and let His words heal my heart. Sometimes, I just am.

Penance

She stood behind him at his feet, weeping, and began to bathe his feet with her tears and to dry them with her hair. Then she continued kissing his feet and anointing them with the ointment.

Luke 7:38

This is probably what most people think. To place yourself at someone’s feet is to be focusing on your wrongdoings, on how much better he is than you. It isn’t a relationship of love, but of service or guilt.

In this story, however, we see that that is not true. Penance is a way that we can turn our sins, no matter how black, into an act of love. The woman’s care of Jesus, motivated by sorrow and love, makes her more dear to Him than if she had never sinned. She does the action that Jesus later does at the last supper–washing the feet of the beloved. In fact, her love is so great that it soothes His Heart for the neglect of His self-righteous host.

We find ourselves here, washing the Lord’s feet, most of all in the Sacrament of Penance. Here we can soothe His Heart for our failings, and He heals us with His gentle love.

Engagement

Mary sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what He said.

Luke 10:39

This is the position of love for a teacher. The student’s eyes fill with love and admiration. The Teacher’s words penetrate her heart, infusing it with love. He looks kindly upon her as she allows Him to fulfill His mission to bring her abundant life.

We experience this most in Adoration. Here, we look at the Lord, and He looks at us. He speaks words of love directly to our hearts. He heals us as we learn the Way, the Truth, and the Life. We come to know that nothing matters but to love Him. In nothing is there contentment but at His feet.

Presence

Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala.

John 19:25

At the foot of the Cross. What can we offer in the face of so much suffering? We are truly poor here. The magnitude of what is happening, the sorrow, the pain, the Providence, the glory… it is all beyond us. We are speechless. We only have one thing to give Him: presence. He is alone. He thirsts for us to come to Him here, in the pain and helplessness and loneliness. He alone accomplishes the work, but He begs that we take the small part we can, to stand at His feet in the Passion.

This is where we find ourselves in every moment of poverty. In our failure, our emptiness, our exhaustion at the end of a day. We ask nothing of Him Who does everything for us of His own accord. We just lay our cheek on His feet and let the Maker of the universe remake it.

2 thoughts on “At His Feet

  1. Pingback: From Mary to Martha | A Grain of Salt

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