This morning I posted this prayer on the Light for the Journey Facebook page.
Lord Jesus Christ today we are reminded
of how you knelt to wash our feet.
In a lowly act of service you poured out love.
Leading us away from power and prestige,
You showed us what true kingship looks like.
Earth shattering, profound,
A reversal of the status quo,
That we still struggle to imitate.
May we today follow your example.
May we kneel and wash the feet of others.
And in so doing share the wonder of your love.
The radical counter cultural nature of Jesus action is almost incomprehensible to us. A God who kneels to wash our feet as a servant. This was a job not just for a servant but for the lowliest of servants.
Two phrases stood out for me as I read the account of Jesus revolutionary action in John 13 this morning. He had loved his disciples during his ministry on earth and now he loved them to the very end. (v2) and I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. (v15)
All that Jesus has been trying to tell his disciples is summed up in this act of servanthood which John describes as one of the final acts of love Jesus shows towards his disciples. Don’t go after power, wealth and position. Don’t expect others to kneel and wash your feet, get down on your knees and wash theirs.
No wonder the import of this story usually passes us by. It has a part of a ceremony rather than a real act of life. But this is the prelude for the Last Supper. Perhaps it is the prerequisite for us truly being able to take communion together in the way that God intended us to.
So my question for all of us as we stand in the shadow of the cross today is: How can we too kneel and wash the feet of others today? How can we become more like the servants God intends us to be and so share the wonder of Christ’s love?