In August of 1977, as I was preparing to leave home for my freshman year of college, I went to a special meeting of my youth group at New Garden Friends Meeting. I would miss a lot of things about my hometown of Greensboro, NC, but that group of people was at the top of my list. That night, our youth director Rob Mitchell had the other students was the feet of the departing seniors. It was, at the time, a very odd experience for me. I had never been part of anything like that, and it made me terribly uncomfortable. I mean, feet are nasty. I felt bad for the washers and embarrassed for myself. I felt so totally unworthy. But as the service went on and Rob read the scripture from John 13:1-17 I began to understand. This was not about glorifying the seniors. This was all about humility and service.
It is easy to understand why Peter went ballistic at the thought of having Jesus wash his feet. Sandals and dirt roads most likely made Peter's feet even more disgusting than mine. Peter had already proclaimed Jesus as the Son of God. It just didn't make any sense. Even in his last few hours in his earthly body, Jesus wanted to remind the disciples (and us) that serving others is a prerequisite to leadership. The master should always be a servant. This was a great example. An even better one would come later in the week, when Jesus would sacrifice his life so that we might have eternal life.
Do you understand the power in being a servant? Or do you still seek power in lifting yourself above the people you encounter each day? If this is something you struggle with, then I highly suggest you wash some feet tonight. It will change your perspective, I promise...
He Is Risen!!!