Preparing our Attitude

*Theme WEek – Jesus: John 13

Old Testament Reading: Deuteronomy 31 & 32

Psalms Reading: Psalm 92

I used to read the Gospels and try and compare myself with various characters. And I never wanted to see myself in Peter, and yet here we are. I never wanted to compare myself to the man who seemed to so frequently fly off the handle or get things wrong. I didn’t want to be like the one who sunk in the waves and denied his Christ three times in one night. But I most definitely feel a kinship with him, especially when I read this passage. 

Poor Peter. His Rabbi, who he has been so close to and loved so much, is humbling himself to wash Peter’s feet and he’s clearly mortified. This was something only the lowliest of servants did. And here was Christ, washing his feet, when none of his disciples had thought to do the same for him. And then when Christ says his disciple can’t be clean unless his feet are washed, he insists Christ wash his hands and head as well. He’s so desperate and proud that it’s a little heartbreaking. Because he has it all wrong. 

Jesus is about to die. He’s about to suffer and die for each of them, and for each of us. And they all have to humble themselves enough to accept that sacrifice. They cannot save themselves. They cannot fully cleanse themselves. Only by accepting Christ and his act of servitude for us can we be clean. 

And not only that, but we have to follow Christ’s example and humble ourselves to serve others. We are not too good to be served, and we are not too good to serve either. 

Peter is fighting this internal battle with himself. He wants to serve Christ, but can’t accept with grace the gift of service that has been given to him. He wants to serve Christ, but perhaps not humble himself so low to serve others in this manner as well. 

Jesus loved his followers dearly. In the beginning of the passage it says that he loved them to the end. This means he loved them to the fullest of capacity and without end. And here he has poured out every bit of himself into complete humility and served them in the basest of ways. 

Our savior did that for us when he was tortured and crucified. This is the attitude of love and service we should have for others. 

Take some time today and prepare your attitude with me. Ask yourself: 

Have I truly acknowledged the deep, humbling act of service that Jesus has done for me? 

In what areas of my life am I still too proud? 

Am I focusing too much on the fact that my feet climbed out of the boat and walked on water, rather than the fact that my feet also sank beneath the waves and I had to be pulled out? 

How can I serve someone else in humility as well this week? 

Am I showing others a deep love and a servant’s heart? 

My prayer for each of us today is that we truly and fully recognize the gift that has been given to us and accept it with full humility, acknowledging our great need for it. I also pray that as we acknowledge our need for salvation and cleansing, we turn and offer grace and service to others as well, so that they can see Christ serving in us. 

Jenn Haynes

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