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Blessed if you do them

Blessed if you do them
Words of Faith 1-17-17
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2017
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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John 13
[12] When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. "Do you understand what I have done for you?" he asked them. [13] "You call me 'Teacher' and 'Lord,' and rightly so, for that is what I am. [14] Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. [15] I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. [16] I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. [17] Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

Jesus asked if the disciples understood the washing of their feet. Apparently there was more to it than just the removal of road grime. There was even more to it than a symbol of daily sacred cleansing. It was an example for life.
Jesus made it clear at the last table He shared with His disciples that the life of a Christian disciple is to be characterized by the washing of feet. Does that mean you should take a bucket and towel to work today? Probably not. But Jesus is clear that we are to wash one another’s feet. We are to serve one another in ways that would seem “below us”. We are to take up tasks that would seem menial or even distasteful to the world. No servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.
Aren’t we to serve only among believers? After all, Jesus was speaking to the twelve disciples when He said, “wash one another’s feet”. Shouldn’t we draw the line somewhere? If so, just where would that line be? Jesus washed the feet of Judas Iscariot at a time when Judas had already given into the devil and plotted to betray Jesus. Jesus washed even the feet of His betrayer.
Where would we draw the line? Clearly Jesus was committed to love even those who persecuted Him and pray for those who hurt Him. The reality is that we never know who it is that God is bringing to faith. Our washing of feet may be the very thing that God uses to bring someone to Himself.
So what does foot washing look like? I have been to conferences where the public washing of feet symbolized racial or ethnic reconciliation. This is powerful but I doubt such public acts are our daily calling. A lifestyle of daily foot washing requires a moment to moment willingness to serve others. Such acts will often be in unnoticed places rather than public forums. Foot washing may take the form of picking up trays at lunch or trash in the parking lot. It may be a visit to someone who is sick or giving relief to a full time caregiver for a short time.
But don’t forget the foot washing that begins in the home. It doesn’t matter how great a servant you are publicly if you do not serve in the home. Picking up the menial tasks as they arise or helping out with difficult jobs is very much a reflection of Christ in the home.
One of the most meaningful Maundy Thursdays (the Thursday of Holy Week) I ever recall was spent sitting with a friend who had had a stroke. I sat with him in order to allow his wife to get a few hours away. I watched television with my friend and periodically suctioned out his tracheotomy in the way his wife had shown me. I could not help but think that this was the real deal. This was very different from the many formal services of foot-washing I had led or attended on the Thursday of Holy Week, yet it seemed to be what Jesus was talking about as He returned to the table.
Are you ready to wash some feet? Now don’t wrestle the socks off the first person you meet on the street today, but keep yours eyes open. There is something waiting that Jesus wants you to do. It may be brief and simple. It will likely be a task that is low and menial. The world would think it demeaning. It will probably be unheralded or even unappreciated. But Jesus calls us.
He calls us to love our families by washing feet. He calls us to be the church by washing feet. He calls us to change the world by washing feet. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

Lord, I am Your servant. Show me what You have for me today. Give me eyes to see, ears to hear and a heart that is willing to serve. Show me that there is nothing that is beneath me. I am ready for Your call. In Jesus’ name.

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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2002, 2017
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)
2820 Business Center Blvd.
Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200
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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.