In the Book of Luke chapter 22:24-27 we read these words.
Luke 22:24 The apostles got into an argument about which one of them was the greatest. 25 So Jesus told them: Foreign kings order their people around, and powerful rulers call themselves everyone’s friends. 26 But don’t be like them. The most important one of you should be like the least important, and your leader should be like a servant. 27 Who do people think is the greatest, a person who is served or one who serves? Isn’t it the one who is served? But I have been with you as a servant.
I want to get a glimpse of what is happening here. Jesus had been with the disciples for over three years. They had witnessed His many miracles, heard His teachings and been privy to many of the intimate unknown messages He delivered and modeled. Jesus was with the disciples in the upper room celebrating the Jewish Passover, but He was instituting the first Holy Communion. He took the bread, broke it, gave His Father thanks and explained to those gathered around Him that His body would soon be broken just like a loaf of bread is broken in half to eat. It was a powerful metaphor but it left the disciples with the familiar “deer in the headlights” look on their faces. Then Jesus took the cup, gave God thanks and praise and told the disciples that the cup represented His blood. His blood was going to pool on the ground under the cross for the sins of humankind. Through His sacrifice He was going to establish a new and everlasting covenant between humankind and God. But the disciples were clueless! They didn’t get it! I’m not so sure I would have either. How about you?
Instead of putting two and two together they were only focused on themselves. It was all about them! In this Scripture, Jesus is talking about saving the world and they’re fighting over who would be the greatest! Have you ever heard the phrase, “a box of rocks?” Jesus knew that it was time for extreme measures. All of the on the job training they had had over the past three years was getting ready to disappear into oblivion. It was still all about them! Jesus took a towel and a basin of water and as He knelt down to wash the disciple’s feet. I can’t help but wonder what was going through their minds. I can only image the silence that must have taken over the room. “What in the world is He doing?” “He’s not supposed to do that!” “That job is for the servant of the homeowner to do!” “Jesus is our King … not our maid!”
Jesus continued that night to individually go to each disciple, humble Himself and wash their feet as the master’s servant would normally do. Jesus had just shared a meal with them, but now He was on His knees washing their feet. As He continued going from one to another, He finally came to the stubborn one, Peter. “You’ll not wash my feet Jesus!” “You’re the King!” I wonder if Peter actually thought that Jesus had momentarily forgotten who He was? Ridiculous! But then Jesus stuns Peter with a rebuttal that should send shivers down our spines. “Unless you allow Me to wash your feet, you will have nothing to do with Me!” Could it really be that Jesus was serious? What Jesus was essentially saying to Peter and to us is that unless we allow God in human form to serve us, we can never be forgiven and be in an eternal relationship with Him. God has to serve Humankind in order to accomplish His will. Think about it!
As a believer in Jesus, I have to allow God the opportunity to do His work. And God chooses to work as a servant in many cases. In this scenario, one had to accept that “It was not about you” in order to comply with Jesus’ request to serve in love. You had to give it up, to let loose, to throw away, to trample upon our own sense of pride, arrogance and self-worth as the King of Kings kneels down to wash our feet. Humility and Lordship mixed perfectly!
NOTE TO SELF: Let Him work, I can’t do it myself