One of the most powerful images from Holy Week is one that many people skip right over. It is Jesus’ washing of the disciples’ feet. Here are the scripture verses so that you can reflect on the words a bit, if you wish: John 13:1-17.
It is Jesus’ final time to teach his disciples, it is his final time to touch another in love, it is his perfect example of servant leadership.
Although I had read the scripture before, I had never actually seen a foot washing ceremony until it was done during a wedding service. It was a profoundly powerful image and it made me really think about the loving tenderness involved in doing such an act of care.
Ten years ago, I spent Holy Week in Thailand and had the blessing and honor to participate in washing the feet of the women of Night Light. The staff and volunteers were split in to pairs so that the 85+ women were being served by people from two ethnicities. Over the years, I am sure many if not most of the BVM Sisters and Associates have literally and/or figuratively washed many feet. Have you ever wondered what happened to that person because of those simple actions?
In this year where so many immigrants and refuges are seeking safety, let us spend some time praying and reflecting on what can we do to “wash the feet” of those walking in to Easter with us.
And then we need to focus on how can we accept receiving a foot washing we really need. Peter wasn’t very gracious about accepting Jesus’ offer to wash his feet. First, he tried to take over for Jesus. Then when he decided to let Christ serve him, he placed demands on Jesus that He do it Peter’s way. Are you trying to run the dinner party God is hosting today?
You have been invited to the table, it is well set and ready for your heart, will, and body to be present. Be a good guest in the house of the Lord today.