Thursday, September 15, 2011


As Christians, we have a specific Biblical mandate to serve one another. Some of us come by this naturally while others have to ‘work’ at it. I think I’m one of the people that comes more naturally to it. And yes, I realize how self-serving could sound, but hear me out. I’m a people person. I love to help. I don’t like to sit around idle watching others do things. I love to help the people I love. It’s not something I particularly struggle with (unless I’m in a sinfully grouchy mood – which is a completely different topic for another time.) There is one problem that comes with this mentality for me however. I don’t like being the one that is served. There. I said it. Why? The Best Answer I can give is not exactly very clear even to me but I’ll give it my best go.  I am a self-sufficient and independent person. I take pride in this.  “I can do it.” “I don’t need anyone.” “I don’t need help.” How many times have I said that to myself, I don’t know. But I do know that almost every time I’ve said it it’s been to my own detriment.  “You’re not the fourth person of the Trinity” is a saying my dad likes to say to me.  The root cause: pride. And it’s wrong. 

This kind of mentality disables other Christians from fulfilling their specific Biblical mandate to serve. There are people that love me and want to serve me. I need, rather, have to let them.  And I have to realize that being served is not a sign of weakness. It’s not a slam against my personal strength or abilities. It simply is obedience to the call God has placed on others to serve one another. 
I think in many ways I can understand Peter’s words when Jesus washed His disciples’ feet: “You shall never wash my feet!” Yet, Jesus wants to wash my feet and He uses His people to do it for Him. How then can I deny my Lord His service to me?

"Jesus, know that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. Then He came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, "Lord, are You washing my feet?" 
Jesus answered and said to him, "What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this." 
Peter said to Him, "You shall never wash my feet!" 
Jesus answered him, "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me." 
Simon Peter said to Him, "Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!" 
Jesus said to him, "He  who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you." For He knew who would betray Him; therefore He said, "You are not all clean." 
So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, HE said to them, "Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet,  you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is he greater than he who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them."
John 13:3-17 

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