And great crowds came to him, bring-ing with them the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute, and many others, and they put them at his feet, and he healed them, so that the crowd won-dered, when they saw the mute speak-ing, the crippled healthy, the lame walking, and the blind seeing. And they glorified the God of Israel. (Matthew 15:30-31 ESV) Perhaps you have noticed that many chapels, cathedrals and other church buildings are in the shape of the cross. There are two main reasons and probably countless others that these buildings have this shape. The first has to do with the connection all Christians have with The Cross of Jesus. Second, the shape of the cross has to do with scripture’s analogy that Christians are part of the body of Christ. So the body of Christ, the church, often meets in buildings, that remind them of Jesus’ blood shed for them.

My first congregation, Immanuel LCMS Canton, was intentionally arranged in this way. On an average Sunday there, you can still find the pastor, located at the head of a cross shaped building, announcing abso-lution as the spokesman for Christ, the church’s true head. He consoles Christ’s church, the body of Christ, by His Word and Sacraments. At the arms of the building, you find an organist on the left side with the altar guild and elders serving and prepar-ing for Christ to serve them on the right.

Look again and you might begin to wonder, where are the feet of Jesus or the foot of the cross in this analogy? Might it be those in the Narthex at

the west end of the original 1950s building? Or could it be those in the fellowship hall or kitchen located in the 2000 addition? It is best to remember that human symbols always have limita-tions.  With Jesus, however, the cross is more than a symbol.  Its message sur-passes human limitations.

With this in mind, the gospel writers reveal that great crowds placed their lame, blind, crippled, mute, and many others, at Jesus’ feet and He healed them. This holds true today. Those who are the feet of Jesus are those who are brought to Jesus that he might heal them.

Physical limitations can be very troubling. But just as real and even more dead-ly are spiritual disabilities. This is why David cries out, “Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:2,10) Jesus reminds us all, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sin-ners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31-32) At the last, spiri-tually sick people, placed at the foot of the cross, believing that Jesus can and will heal them, will not be disappointed.

Opposite the head of the church, located directly at the west end of Immanuel Lutheran’s property, we find an extreme example of those at the foot of the cross, in the cemetery. In this cemetery you find those who no longer walk, talk, or see at all.  So great is their need, that humanly speaking, there is nothing to be done.

However, over the years funeral “crowds” have planted these repentant believers at the feet of Jesus that he might, once again, heal. While at the moment their bodies remain deadly silent, the promise of heal-ing and everlasting life is secure.  Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.” (John 5:25)

Until that day when faith in the coming Christ becomes sight … God be with you till we meet again … at Jesus feet.

The Rev. Seth Meyer is the pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Winfield.

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