I recently had a discussion with a young man about Jesus washing His disciples feet (I hate that I'm calling him a young man, but He's my younger by more than half my age, I'm getting old). This is significant! I'm glad a teen is thinking about these things! The gist of the conversation centered around what washing feet was and meant. Simply put, it was the job no one else wanted, and everyone felt they were too good for. It was a job for servants, it was nasty, demeaning, and low. Each of the men had seen Jesus ride in to Jerusalem on the colt of a Donkey, and the crowds eat it up. Surely they were about to be rewarded their titles in the Kingdom! Surely Jesus would understand that I can't be bothered to wash feet! And then, the unthinkable happens: the Master strips bare, wraps a towel around His waist, and washes all of their feet. What a humbling experience! Jesus, humble, washed feet, and the disciples, humbled, learned that THIS is the leadership Jesus desires in His Kingdom.
As a minister, sometimes I get to do what no one else wants to do. In my mind, I begin to grumble and complain, but the Lord gently corrects me, telling me it is not about me, and all about Him. Washing feet is something all of us should do. Not that we should load up burdens on ourselves or others, but we should humbly serve, even if it means doing a job no one else wants to do. Jesus, the Author of life, the Creator of all things washed dirty, nasty feet. Why should we expect to do any less? If we are called by His name, we will love how He loves, and do as He did. Do you wash feet? Or, do you say "someone else will do it, it's not my job?" It speaks of our hearts in how we answer such questions. Go, wash feet, and be great in the Kingdom as you copy Jesus' example. John 13:1-20 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.” For he knew who was to betray him; that was why he said, “Not all of you are clean.”
When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. I am not speaking of all of you; I know whom I have chosen. But the Scripture will be fulfilled, ‘He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.’ I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am he. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”