Tuesday, January 29, 2008


I learned a new Hausa proverb this week that goes something like, “Your feet are your commission…”. I gathered that the essence is something like “your feet show where your heart is…”

I had been talking to my accountability partner about my frustrations with language and how I feel utterly useless because I can’t communicate. It makes me want to hide out or to go back to teaching English (where I know what I am doing and can feel a measure of success). She told me that in using my feet and getting out there to visit my neighbours I was not only exposing myself to the language to learn it, but I was saying that I cared about the people I was visiting even if I couldn’t understand or speak to them in a way that I would like to.
It makes you think doesn’t it? Where have your feet been spending most of their time? What are your priorities really? It is easy to let the busy-ness of life take over and direct your steps, so that you find your feet are always on the gas pedal and rarely stopping to visit that friend or neighbour that you have been meaning to catch up with. Or so busy rushing to the next location, that you don’t take the time to ask the store clerk you see weekly (or daily?) how they are doing –or even worse never take the time to really listen when you do ask. Maybe when you put your socks on tomorrow (or in my case, sandals) you’ll take a minute to ask God to direct your steps. You might be amazed at where you end up.
[About the pictures: The first is traditional henna tattoos that the women here do to get ready for a wedding. They usually decorate their hands too. These feet belong to me and a cousin that came for a visit we actually did this with a friend who was getting ready to go home to get married. The second is a shoemaker making sandals.]


LoreliC said...

That is a great proverb... and a great reflection. Thanks for sharing!

Starr said...

Came here from Loreli in xanga-
I just really liked the sentiment in this post :-) Really rings true for me.