WASHING FEET: A SERVANT’S JOB?

DAY 91 OF 365 IN 2021

John 13:5 After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.

Job descriptions need to be clearly laid out in every workplace to reduce the chances of overlaps and work left undone. This situation can however have negative effects as specific tasks could be left unattended because they are for individuals in a particular job bracket, even though others may have the requisite skill set and authorisation to complete the same tasks.

In our text today, Jesus sort of overrode the hierarchical protocols and went feet washing. The disciples would have been eyes open wide and looking on in absolute shock because that task, belonged to the least; in households, it was reserved for ‘servants’ to do. Hence, it is no real shock that Simon Peter protested vehemently ‘you will never wash my feet’. To this Jesus responds with ‘until I wash you feet, you do no belong with me’.

In no way however, was this any indicator that Jesus had forgotten his job description or had commenced the process for the abolishing of authority, hierarchy or positions of power. Surely not, for those have their place.

What He actually emphasises is that at the core of power, there should be a permanent seat for ‘a heart of service’: a heart that sees past job descriptions and the mechanical completion of assigned tasks, but offers its all for the good of others. Beloved, ‘we are called to serve, not to be served’ and without service, we are still some way off understanding what Jesus did.

#sly

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