Holy Thursday takes us to the Upper Room where the first thing Jesus did was wash the disciples feet, humbly like a servant. Across the world this evening thousands of lay people will have their feet washed by the Clergy (bishops, priests, pastors…) I don’t know about you, but if asked to be one of the in-public-washees, i would make sure my feetsies were properly pedicured before anyone (especially a priest!) washed them.
In Jesus’ time most folks wore sandals. It gets very dusty walking around the Middle East which would make the disciples’ feet very smelly, dirty & definitely not pre-pedicured.
But Jesus takes those smelly feet gently in His hands & washes the grime away. Jesus, their leader. Jesus, the Messiah. Jesus, the Son of God. Jesus, their Teacher. On His knees. With a basin & towel. Washing. Their. Feet. …
… Teaching them (& us) a lesson in LOVE. It’s time to put on our aprons of faith, roll up our sleeves & start washing. Since those water buckets can get heavy, it’s a good idea to strengthen our L.O.V.E. muscles. What’s L.O.V.E.?
Live Others-centered Value Everyone
L – We must choose to LIVE LOVE – because love IS a choice. Choosing to live with a towel of love wrapped around our attitudes vs. being dead to the needs of those around us or within us. Living in Love is to be alive with the love of Christ in the deepest part of our hearts & letting that love infiltrate our minds & other parts of our being.
O – Washing feet puts the focus on what we can do for others. Small things, big things, sometimes smelly things… our actions speak louder than our words. Being Others-Centered means not seeking ‘what’s in it for me’ but what’s in me for them. (‘love always protects, always hopes, always perseveres… I Cor 13’)
V – To tenderly wash someone’s feet intimates VALUE. Jesus tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves, but first we must ‘get’ our Beloved status as daughters & sons of The King of Heaven. We are Beloved. As we act out of our Belovedness, we recognize that same status in others & lift them up (not down!)
E – Tax collectors (sell-outs to Rome) & Zealots (freedom fighters/terrorists depending on which side you’re on) & Judas (the betrayer): Jesus washed the feet of Everyone in that Upper Room. That means your annoying colleague, neighbor, pushy Republican/ Democrat in-law, liberal or conservative (sometimes) friend. Ever thought about washing the feet of those with whom you have very little in common? (or maybe even dislike? Love is not so much about ‘like’ as it is about choice & commitment.) Everyone also includes HIV/AIDS victims, the rich, the poor, politicians (!!) & people of every color, ethnicity & ability around this world. EVERYONE.
If we exercised our L.O.V.E. muscles more often (vs. our ‘judge-others’ muscles) maybe (just maybe) we might fulfill what Jesus Christ asked us to do ….
“Do you know what I have done to you?..if I, your Lord & Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet… As the Father has loved Me, so I have loved you; abide in My love… This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” (John 13:12, 14; John 15: 9, 12)
Virginia : )