Today's Devotional Thought
August 01, 2012 by Rachel Piferi
Only one of the Gospels records the beautiful description of Jesus washing the disciple's feet. And there is no more fitting place to find this demonstration of love than the Gospel of John, written by the disciple whom Jesus loved.
As I read this story again recently, I was struck by the first verse of the chapter. I am not even sure I have ever paid attention to the introductory sentence before. I suppose I was always just so eager to get to the meat of the story. But when I read it again recently, God really impressed upon my heart the importance of that first verse and this poignant introduction to the very precious gesture he was about to perform.
John 13 opens this way:
It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love (v. 1).
Don't you just love this introductory verse?
Jesus loved his disciples so much in his time with them. He showed them his love through teaching them, strengthening them with truth, and patiently molding them for what was coming. He was their model for how to instruct and guide others later. Even in his last hours, Jesus was showing his love for his closest friends.
And, in the last part of verse 1, we see that Jesus was about to show them the full extent of his love. The New American Standard says, he loved them to the end.
On his knees.
On the floor in front of each one of them.
Washing their feet.
In the last moments of freedom he has, he is serving others.
In this beautiful demonstration of service, we see the full extent of Jesus' love for us. Not only did he spend his days with them teaching them and bearing their weaknesses as they learned, but he continued to serve them up until the very end.
And we get a perfect picture of how we should love others. Selflessly. Humbly. Kneeling in vulnerable submission to anotherís needs.
To the full extent possible.
To the very end.
In Jesus' last moments on this Earth, he was still demonstrating selfless love through servant hood. And through this humble gesture was teaching us how to fully love.
Foot washing is not nearly as common today (or as necessary) as it was thousands of years ago. But, there are many other ways that we can humbly serve others. Many ways that we can show others the full extent of Jesus' love.
Pray today that God would show you the ways that he wants you to love others fully. How to love them to the end.