Readings for the Day
Jeremiah 7-9, John 13
Verses of the Day
12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you
Thoughts for the Day
As Jesus goes to his final destination, the cross, he gives them one, final visual lesson. When the time came for the servant in the house to wash the disciples' feet, Jesus took off his robe and washed each of the disciples' feet. Peter had the most trouble with it, and refused to have Jesus do such a menial and lowly task. But Jesus isn't budging. He tells Peter that unless he lets him was his feet, he has no part of him. Meaning if Peter misses the significance of what Jesus is demonstrating, he will miss what it means to be his follower. A disciple would have never had his feet washed by his "rabbi" his teacher. But this is one of the most important lessons Jesus will leave with his disciples.
In fact, Jesus tells them that what he is doing for them they should do for each other. If it is not beneath Jesus to wash their feet, it was certainly not beneath them to follow his example. Why did Jesus use this object lesson? Why was it so important for them to not miss out on its significance? All along Jesus has been turning upside their notion of who the Messiah is and what he did to show He was the Savior. Earlier he had taught the disciples when they were arguing about who was the greatest, what true greatness really looks like.
He said, "Even the Son of Man did not come to serve but to be served and give his life as a ransom for many."
Jesus gives us a new power for leadership, which many have called "servant leadership". What does this mean? It means that those who have been given power and authority get o serve those under their authority. A pastor is called to serve his congregation. A politicians serve the people. Policeman serve and protect the community. Business owners serve their clients and provide gainful and fair employment. Leadership has its privileges, we get to serve!
Can you imagine what communities would be like if we led like Jesus? Surely when Jesus said, "As I have washed your feet, wash one another's feet", he was speaking to us today. Simply said, in this model there is no one beneath any of us. As Jesus said, "What you do to the least of these you do unto me. "
Who has God called you to serve? Would you be willing to wash their feet? Would you allow them to wash your feet?