Every day I get an e-mail mediation from Fr. Richard Rohr, the founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation. Yesterday's was entitled In What Aspects of Nature Am I Most Able to See the Eternal Goodness of God?. Quite appropriate for Earth Day.
One of the themes of the message was that we've lost our connection with nature. Fr. Rohr suggested that it might be a good thing to walk outside barefoot, like Saint Francis of Assisi did, and experience “Sister Earth, our Mother”. For some reason that thought resonated with me, and I decided to act on it today. If it's not raining, my preschool class goes outside for 30 minutes in the morning and afternoon. I decided to wear flip-flops to work today in case the opportunity to slip off my shoes and play in the grass presented itself.
This morning I put on a pair of jeans, then picked out one of the school logo-ed shirts hanging in my closet. I decided the kelly green one would be appropriate in honor of the day. It felt strangely decadent to pass on shoes and slide my feet into the black flip-flops I wear around the house instead. I had a bit of extra time before I left for work, so I put a coat of bright pink nail polish on my visible toenails.
Sadly, I didn't get the chance to take off my shoes feel the grass, but I did get a piece of rubber mulch from the swing set wedged between my foot and shoe, which was easy to shake out. I had one teacher say something about my shirt, and one of the boys noticed my toenails. He told me that he loved them, and I realized I did too.
When I got home from work I changed my clothes (but kept the footwear) and went outside to check on the garden. Before I stepped over the chicken-wire fence, I decided to take off my shoes and feel the dirt. It hasn't rained for a few days, so it's pretty dry, but it felt great on my toes. Sister Earth, indeed.