One morning before liturgy I was in the narthex with my children, guiding them through lighting candles and venerating the icons before entering the liturgy. We approached the icon of Christ sitting enthroned, and I instructed my near-two-year-old, “Kiss Jesus’ feet, Irene.”
She bent over in my arms, grabbed both sides of the icon stand, and smacked her lips on his outstretched foot. I was satisfied with her compliance and made a move towards the next icon, when she protested, and managed to say, “Other foot!” in toddler speak only a mother could understand.
So I returned to the icon, and she carefully smacked her lips on Jesus’ other foot.
What attention to detail. It shocked me out of the cloud I had been in. I realized I had been moving swiftly through the motions towards this other goal I had in mind–entering the nave–when right here, right in front of me, was a chance to offer heartfelt worship. I was in too much of a hurry to see that both of Jesus’ feet needed kissing.