Ticklish feet – no laughing matter

Neighbourly Advice According to Ed

Rev. Raymond Maher

Ed, my old neighbour, in Saskatchewan loves to tickle his grandchildren. His grandchildren keep a cautious eye on him in case he might grab them and tickle them. Some of his grandkids are incredibly ticklish, and Ed has never understood, until now, how being tickled may not be what others want to experience. 

It was a trip to Edmonton that turned Ed into a marshmallow when he endured having his feet tickled. At West Edmonton Mall, Ed was pressured into getting a pedicure. Ruby, Ed’s wife, accuses Ed of growing toenails that are deadly weapons. Toenails that are too long and hard to cut are not that uncommon. Since it was Edmonton, and no one would ever know in Saskatchewan that Ed had his toenails cut by a stranger in Alberta, he experienced his first and last pedicure there.

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Ed found that there was a lot more to a pedicure than having his toenails cut. His feet were first soaked in hot water, which was okay. Then the little gal in charge of his feet scrubbed his feet, especially his toes with a variety of scratchy brushes. All of which was hard to take but bearable, until she brushed the bottom of his toes and feet. It tickled the bottom of his feet so that he wanted to say, “Cut that out.”

Ed almost laughed like a baby and wanted to kick like a mule, as he hardly stayed in his chair. He squirmed and sighed, and the gal dealing with his feet said in a foreign language something to herself. Loosely translated it means, “Another big baby!” At least, Ed found that the gal cut his toenails so short that he figures his toenails won’t need cutting for months. 

In the Bible, the disciples may have found that Jesus tickled their feet when he washed their feet during the final Passover Meal. During the meal, Jesus got up from the table took off his outer clothing and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that he wrapped around him.

Jesus knew the time had come for him to leave the world to go to His Father. He wanted to show his disciples the full extent of his love. He was their teacher and Lord, but there had been no one to wash their feet when Jesus and the disciples arrived to eat the meal. Foot washing was usually done by a servant or slave. None of the disciples had offered to do the foot washing. It was a menial task that they all decided that they would not volunteer to do.

They were uncomfortable and stricken when Jesus left the meal and began washing their feet. Simon Peter objected when Jesus was about to wash his feet. Peter felt as their teacher and Lord, Jesus was too important to be washing his feet. Only later would Peter realize that not only did Jesus give the disciples clean feet but also the cleansing of their souls. Jesus showed his disciples that God’s love is willing to do whatever is needed to be done to bless others, even shedding his blood in death on the cross for the cleansing of our sins.

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