My kids are drawn to a mud puddle like a moth is drawn to light. It never fails, the second they see mud they have to walk in it…they’re just being kids.
I was reading in John 13 when Jesus washed his disciples feet and I started thinking about my kids dirty feet that they are often unaware of.
Now I know commentators and preachers have taught this passage from the angle that Jesus was teaching his disciples how to serve one another, and I agree with that.
But I just wonder if Jesus wasn’t also putting in place a regimen for his disciples that went beyond just serving.
A disciple following Jesus would have been covered in Jesus’ dust. And not only that, they would have walked were Jesus walked, ministering along with Him, learning how to be shepherds themselves. Let me remind you, Jesus walked into some pretty rough circumstances.
They would have been affected by the constant ridicule of the Pharisees, they would have been affected by the constant need of the lost, hurting and dying. They would have dealt with sickness that most of us work to avoid. They would have walked through some cruddy junk. Because after all, we live in a fallen world.
Have you ever walked through junk? Junk you may not have asked for?
An affair you never thought would happen, but here you are. Or a sickness you never thought you would have to deal with, but you are. Or financial ruin that you thought you did everything to avoid, but now you’re in the middle of it.
The junk may not even be yours, it could be a friend or relatives’ junk, but your feet are getting covered in the residue.
Perhaps Jesus had noticed His disciples feet. Perhaps He knew that in order for them to get refreshed, and not bogged down by the junk of our fallen world, that a good foot washing would give them the refreshment and restoration their hearts were needing.
Yes, you and I should serve one another, but Jesus told Peter, “If you don’t let me wash your feet, then you will not be able to share life with me.”
We often want to think the “life” Jesus is talking about is eternal life, but when Peter ask for Jesus to wash his entire body Jesus responds with, “You are already clean. You’ve been washed completely and you just need your feet to be be cleansed…”
Peter was already saved, but I see the heart of Jesus, the Good Shepherd, taking care of the health of his sheep. He’s teaching them a principle that they would need to continually implement to keep themselves from becoming weary in ministry.
There’s a lot of weary Christians.
But Jesus’s invitation for life is open to you and me, “Come and get your feet washed, be refreshed.”
If you wondering what a good foot washing would look like, it would be soaking in the Lord’s presence. It would be laying burdens down knowing that God is an expert at taking care of burdens. It would be tending to the needs of your soul.
I believe Jesus’ invitation for rest and refreshment is always on the table, you and are are the ones who choose if we’re going to accept the invitation.
So why don’t we just go and soak in Jesus’ love for a bit and get the junk off our feet.
Be blessed ~