Stinky Feet

Just the other day...I sat again, with my Bible open and coffee in hand, reading the book of John. Have you ever read the Bible and literally had words jump off the page at you? That's how it has been for me lately...so fresh, so deep, so life-giving. I was reading about how Jesus got up from the Passover feast that He was enjoying with the disciples, how he put a towel around His waist, and then proceeded to wash and then dry the disciples feet. Again, my imagination kicked in...imagining GOD washing my feet. Not just washing them, but then taking the time to dry them with the towel around His waist. What love...breathtaking...and amazingly humbling. Seriously, if you're ever around me, just feel free to keep your feet to yourself, please:) Who wants to touch another person's nasty feet?! Not me!! And in those days, they had dusty roads and wore sandals. Imagine the filth!!! GROSS. But here is the God of the universe bowing before His precious creation to teach them a lesson...and we dare not miss this lesson. It's a biggie!!! Read it for yourself:

12When 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. 14Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. 15I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.

You should wash one another's feet. I did it for you as an example, now you do it also. Ah...but what does that really look like? What does that really mean? Do we carry around a basin and towel everywhere we go? I'm thinkin' that's not what He was getting at...and bare with me because I am certainly not a theologian (remember, I'm on a journey, learning and growing day-by-day)...but I think He simply means that we are to care for each other...to truly care and not just give lip-service. We are to go out of our way to serve another person in their time of need, whether it be during a difficult time or in the everyday business (and busyness!) of life. And, we are to do this without regard for ourselves, without thinking about the filth that might get on us, or about the difficulty or the bind it might put us in. We are to serve in whatever way we can, without thinking of what we might get in return, but giving out of the wellspring of love that Christ has placed in our hearts if we have decided to be one of his followers. Even further than that, I think we are to observe others and find out what would bless them the most. Practically speaking, it would be that area that the other person probably would never-in-a-million-years ask you to do. It might look something like, entering a busy, stressed-out mother's house (can I get a witness?!) and mopping her floor or doing her dishes. Maybe it would be taking bags full of groceries to your friend whose mate just lost his/her job, or possibly paying for a month's worth of prescriptions for your parents/grandparents who are on a fixed income. What about choosing to bless your mate by joining him/her in completing a really hard task, or saying no to something "good" so that you can hang out with your child who is struggling in an area? In our modern day, washing one another's feet means that we are humbling ourselves before one another in service and being Christ's hands extended in a world where most people are just too busy to care...in a world that is mired down with dust and filth...in a world that is literally ACHING and LONGING for the love that only Christ can give. It's more than giving lip-service to your changed life in Christ, but demonstrating that he has made you a new creation by going against the flow of "it's all about me". I have heard it said that Christ is on trial everyday in this world. I am coming to understand more and more that this world will continue to justify it's rejection of him unless we, as Christians, as Christ-followers, as disciples, truly start to care for each other ... for those who are "in the family" and for those who aren't yet followers. I'll step off of my soap box here so that you can read the truth from the Master himself.

At the end of Chapter 13, Jesus tells the disciples this:

34 "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."

In Matthew 5:16, Jesus also said, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."

In the end, it's alllllll about him! It is ALL about pointing people to God and making them wonder, "Why would he or she do such a thing for me? Why does he or she care?!" The conclusion they are to reach is, "It's because he/she is a Christian...he/she truly loves God...THAT'S why." Remember, whatever you do, do all for the GLORY OF GOD!!

Now, please quit reading and get out there! It's high time for you (and me!) to get busy washing somebody's stinky feet:) There's much work to do!

For His glory,