Updated: Oct 31, 2019
By Katlyn Hudgins
The roads were dusty and their feet, all twenty- four feet of the disciples, were worn with age and miles from following Him through the streets. The disciple’s dirty toes caked in the muckfrom travel, Jesus saw it all.
Our Creator noticed the dirt and grime and it did not scare him. Instead, He embraced it.
The King of Kings took of his cloak, wrapped a towel around his waist, and bowed low to the ground before His disciples. He cradled their feet in His hands, one by one, and washed them clean. Even knowing He was going to be denied and betrayed He still chose to bow low and wash. This task was normally reserved for the lowest of the servants because it was filthy work to scrape off the muck and dust that clung to people’s feet and yet, Jesus washed them…
And then He called them to do the same.
How many times have we seen the dirt on others feet and balked at the idea of where that dirt came from? The outcast. The abandoned. The addiction. The shame. The different. The divorced. The injured. The dirty. The Liars. The hurting. The sin. The ones that speak differently, think differently, worship differently, choose differently. The dirt and sin hung onto them from the places they shouldn’t have gone or from paths they were forced to walk and instead of bowing low we turned our eyes away. How many times have we done this to our own brothers and sisters in the church? Seen their dirt and turned away.
I think when most people read this passage they picture Jesus happily washing the feet of men who loved and adored Him. But Jesus washed Peters feet. The man who denied Him three times when Jesus’ life was on the line. But Jesus washed Judas’ feet. The man who betrayed Jesus unto death.
It is easy to wash the feet of those who love us, look like us, talk like us, walk in our circles but it is hard to wash the feet of those who don’t.
How often do we look at their dirt and not only turn away but instead we point it out? We have the opportunity to bow low and wash their feet without saying a single word but many times we point it out in shame or try to play the role of the Holy Spirit and force conviction on them. Instead of saying, “come here, sit. Let me wash your feet” many of us say, “look at your dirt! What dirty feet you have! Where have you travelled to collect such dirt? Why are you so dirty?”
I challenge you to not call out their dirt but to come alongside them and bow low. Humbling ourselves, the way Christ did, to so we can wash the feet of our brothers and sisters. For you and I are no cleaner than they are. We all have our dirt and we all need to be washed clean.