Sunday, March 25
Week Six - John 13:1-17; 13:31-35
Read John 13:1-17; 13:31-35
What is your family’s tradition—shoes on or shoes off when you come into the house? In New Testament times, one of the traditions when people came into a home was washing their feet. Often this duty fell to the servants, but it was also common for students to wash their teacher’s/rabbi’s feet. It was considered a way to learn the Torah. Typical of Jesus, he turned the whole tradition upside down—he instead washed the feet of his disciples. Disciples who would soon deny him and one who would betray him. Disciples who had flawed ideals about the Kingdom of God. Disciples who argued with one another. Jesus said that he did this as an example or pattern for them and told them they’d be blessed if they would wash one another’s feet.
How was Jesus able humble to himself in this way? Verse three might give us a clue: “Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God…” Jesus had security because he knew what had been given to him, he knew where he was from, and he knew where he was going. This kind of knowing is a great beginning place for us too. When we’re secure in our identity and in the things that God has given us, we can humble ourselves to serve others. Even people who are challenging. We can trust that God loves us and has empowered us. We can trust that we were created by God for a purpose and ultimately that we are going to be with God. Shortly after Jesus concluded washing the disciples’ feet he said, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, you also love one another. By this all will know that you are my disciples if you have love for one another.” (v. 34-35)
Lord, thank you for the example of humility and servanthood that you give to me. This week may I be filled with Holy Spirit and reminded that I am deeply loved by the Father so that I can freely serve others. Amen.
One of the great things about serving is that we can serve right where we are. Is there someone right around you who could use an encouraging word, some cookies or just spending time with them? Is there something you could do for someone that would be a great blessing to them? One of the other great things about serving is that we discover that it truly is more of blessing to give than to receive.