I know a lot of people who have the same struggle as myself: feet. For many reasons, I’m simply not a fan of feet. They are not the cleanest part of our bodies and you have to work hard to have manicured and pretty feet. Well, I don’t mind them as long as they are cleaned and well taken care of, otherwise I really have a hard time concentrating on something other than keeping the look of nausea from showing on my face.
I love, though, how God will speak to us in our own ways…in our own pettiness. Only He would reveal this to me… in a very real picture He revealed my heart.
Here in Africa, feet are the means by which people travel from home to work. Feet allow them to climb dirty and dusty roads to fetch their water and food. The water can’t be used to wash their feet, it has to be used to cook and drink. I have found often that I cannot look at the feet because I will never be able to do ministry again in Africa. Of course I’m joking, but it really has been funny how sensitive I have been to my awareness of feet here, because feet here are the worst that you can imagine.
I was sitting with a group of women yesterday as we were encouraging one another and I was waiting on my time to speak. I was sitting in the grass with them and all I could see were feet. I know this sounds so ridiculous, but I was really trying hard not to look and stare because, like I said, I am not very good with keeping my facial expressions stoic. It is in this moment, the Lord in His humor speaks to my heart.
John 13:5 says “He poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples feet….When he had finished washing their feet, he asked them ‘Do you understand what I have done for you? You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you should wash one another’s feet.'”
Jesus did not wash his disciples’ feet to get them to be nice to one another. His goal was to extend his mission on earth after he was gone. We are to move into the world serving God, serving each other. As I sat there after traveling thousands of miles from Texas to Uganda, and now traveling even more to come meet these women, I thought I had such a servant’s heart. But God was quick to remind me that if he asked me to wash these women’s feet, could I do it?
My first thought was absolutely not, there was no way I could wash these feet. But then I thought about how the disciples feet must have been just like these sweet African’s feet…dirty and calloused because they did not have shoes. Cut and scraped because they had walked many miles to get here. Jesus, my Jesus, the King got down and washed these dirty awful feet. He SERVED them. He has served ME. He has washed your feet and mine…not only our dirty feet but our dirty hearts.
I sat trying to prepare for what I was about to say, and nothing came but tears. For the first time, I felt the weight. I could not imagine touching these feet, and then I pictured Jesus washing them. I suddenly realized that I have not reached that level of servant-hood yet. I pray that I will wash the feet of those who need to know that there is not one that is dirty enough that another would not serve him by washing his feet.
For He has washed mine…