I love to be served. For someone to take care of my dishes at the end of a meal, to take out the garbage even though it's my turn, to have a glass of water and a blanket handed to me when I walk in the door. Sometimes it's because I'm lazy but more so it's because being served is how I feel loved.
While I love to be served, I need to make sure I'm serving as well. Regularly I need to ask myself: have I gotten dirty today? I'm not talking "Where is the hand sanitizer?" I'm talking, have I sacrificed some part of myself to help someone else? Have I put the towel on?
In John 13, Jesus' disciples are fighting over who will serve. More accurately, who will not serve. They've been out traveling and their feet are filled with grime. Yuck!
When supper's ready at my house Mom screams "W-A-S-H" and a stampede of elephants rushes to the bathroom to wash our hands. In Jesus' time, they washed feet before eating. Not because they ate with their toes but because they wore sandals and by the end of the day their feet were caked with dust, dirt, and whatever else happened in the street.
Since it was a dirty job, the feet-washing responsibility fell on the person with the lowest status. Can't you just hear the disciples? "I'm not doing it!" "EWW! I am NOT washing the poop out from between your toes!" "Not gonna happen."
While they're busy bickering about who is NOT going to do the dirty work, Jesus is in the other room changing His clothes. He comes out wearing a towel and bends down at the feet of His followers and begins scrubbing.
It might just be me but something doesn't add up in this passage. The is a job for the lowest person. Jesus is doing it. Jesus is God. Last time I checked, God is NOT the lowest on the totem pole. That's the point. Our God named Jesus was willing to become the least of these to serve His friends. Even His friend that would betray Him. He knew all this and He still put the towel on.
What about you? Have you put the towel on? Do me a favor and serve someone today. Oh, and don't do it because Katie said so. Don't even do it because it's your job. Do it out of love (you can decide whether for that person or for God).
Let me know how I can serve you,