“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’”
When Ken and I take part in our Family Retreats, I smile whenever I see a child walking with the aid of leg braces and Canadian crutches. It always reminds me of my father who used a pair of similar crutches. All through his 70s and 80s Daddy hobbled around on them due to severe arthritis in his legs.
He used his crutches to push aside chairs or boxes, point at something in the sky, or even ring a doorbell. On a good day, he could hit a ball tossed to him by a grandkid. Around the farm we could always tell when he was on the tractor cutting hay in the field—his crutches would be leaning against the barn door.
When I was in the hospital after my diving accident, I could always tell when Daddy was arriving for a visit. I would hear the familiar “click-click” of his crutches echoing down the corridor.
I’d think, Oh boy, Daddy’s here! More than anyone else in the family, I felt that he understood—he could truly empathize—with my pain and paralysis. His visits were always a blessing. To this day, the click-click of crutches on a pavement or tiled floor is, for me, a welcomed sound. It’s a clarion call, announcing: How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!… especially if those feet can only walk with crutches!
This summer, Ken and I will be heading to another Joni and Friends Family Retreat where we will see lots of adults and kids using wheelchairs and crutches. And when we’re in the dining hall, I just bet I’ll hear that familiar clicking sound on the floor. I’ll turn, see someone on crutches, and will smile and think of my dad. Given that Father’s Day is this month, I may even shed a tear.
Oh, how I wish Daddy were alive to see the beautiful feet of our Joni and Friends teams bringing the Good News to thousands of people at Family Retreats who use wheelchairs, communication devices, white canes, ventilators, electric scooters, walkers… and, yes, crutches.
So thank you, friend, for your prayers and gifts that make such amazing ministry possible.
I’m so grateful to you for being on the Joni and Friends team “who brings good news, who proclaims peace, who brings good tidings, who proclaims salvation, who says to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’”