“When was the last time Jesus asked you to wash someone’s feet?”
“Almost everyday!”, I thought, as the question came from the pulpit. Certainly, the speaker’s intent was less literal than I was making it. As a reflexologist tending the feet of many people entrusted to my care, it was very personal. Today being Maundy Thursday (on the Christian calendar) and foot washing day (because that’s what Jesus did for His disciples on this day), I’m taking the opportunity to reflect a bit on our service to others.
Sitting at the feet of the one entrusted to my care is an incredibly humbling experience. The privilege of assisting them in releasing the stress of their lives offers exhilarating rewards. This illustration (left) shows just how real it is when holding the feet to be holding and caring for the individual’s whole person.
Did the washing of feet in the first century include a bit of a foot massage? I’m not sure we know the answer to that, but I’m sure just rubbing the dusty feet of a weary traveler even a bit would have been going, at the very least, that extra mile of service.
Washing the feet was a slave’s task — not a small one, but seemingly a lowly one. Jesus didn’t mind.
“So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, ‘Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.'” John 13:12-15 (NASB)
What a powerful invitation to serve Him by serving others even in the menial tasks that often go unnoticed, but are never missed by the Father. “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’” ~~ Matthew 25:40 (NASB)
Where will we go and where will we serve? When the Master calls will we say, “Here am I, send me!”? ~~Isaiah 6:8 (NASB)
I just can’t leave this post without mentioning that Compassion International children are certainly among the “least of these” and especially loved by God. Maybe your next “foot washing” opportunity is to sponsor one of these precious children.