Feet Washing in the Age of Hand Washing

Feet Washing in the Age of Hand Washing

It’s Holy Week.

I feel inspired and passionately spurred on, which means you’ll be seeing a few extra posts from me this week. My hope is that they will encourage you during this difficult time. We can admit that, right? This crisis is a difficult time for us all in some way or another. We are all being effected. Our routines messed up. Plans on hold. Life is different.

I’ve been thinking about COVID-19 in relation to Easter. What a juxtaposition of events. I think that’s what fires me up most. Death comes (it’s purpose!!) to steal, kill and destroy, but man Jesus came on the scene and was like, “I see your death and I raise you a RESURRECTION!”

That’s powerful.

But today I’m not talking about Jesus’ resurrection. I’m backing up a little bit to the Thursday before that amazing resurrection Sunday. The day that Jesus and His disciples were celebrating the Passover together. Later that same night, He would be betrayed, arrested and accused.

If you read John’s account of that night (John 13) he shares how before dinner Jesus got up from the table and prepared a foot washing station for His disciples. All of them mind you. Judas included who, John tells us, had already been prompted to betray Jesus.

And we know Jesus is aware of this, too. If you read a little further (verse 21) Jesus let’s them all in on that secret. “Someone here is going to betray me.” Eleven of them stumped and horrified at this news. One released to do what he intended on doing.

Jesus washed Judas’ feet.

I can’t understand this. Every year I meditate on this Truth– that the Son of God would stoop down and wash the stinky, disgusting feet of a traitor.

How absolutely humbling when I think about the people who have stabbed me in the back or spoken unkind, hurtful words to me. I don’t want to be within 10 feet of them (Have I mentioned I love social distancing 😉 ) let alone wash their stinking feet.

Worse yet, Jesus washed His disciples feet so He could show them what He expects them to do, too. Or rather, US to do.

If Jesus was just washing the disciples feet to show us how humble and wonderful He was that would be GREAT. But you want me to do that too? Uhhhh. Not so great. In fact, I do NOT want to do that. Are there some other options? Something less….messy.

Alas, that is not the case and we are in fact strongly encouraged (aka voluntold) to do this. Which begs the question: How do we wash feet in the age of hand washing?

How do we exemplify this in a practical way? No, I don’t think we need to go around actually washing people’s feet. Social distancing again, remember? Jesus was showing the heart of the issue and not the method. Humbly lowing ourselves to serve was the point. Not the feet.

During a global pandemic, it practically looks like washing your hands and staying home for the health of those around you when you’d rather be out and about doing just about anything. On a more personal level, it might mean calling a person and saying, “I know we don’t see eye to eye, but I want you to know love and unity matters to me more than my opinion or being right.”

Humility is shown in action/service. Though this is a season where we are separated and isolated we can still follow Jesus’ example. We don’t get a free pass here. I’m praying and asking God to help me. This isn’t easy and I don’t like it, but then I picture my Savior, my beautiful Savior, stooped down and showing me how it can be done. It must be done. Not as some religious requirement, but rooted in love. Just like when He did it.

 

 

 

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