A Better Servant

A Better Servant
When I was a little boy playing little league baseball, I played the position of catcher.  The ball fields in South Carolina were made of red clay and in the summertime, the fields were very dry and dusty.  As a catcher squatting down in that dirt trying to stop every pitched ball, I could get quite dirty.  After a game, I often looked like a red-faced raccoon as the dirt would go through my catcher’s mask and settle around my eyes. 
Of course my mother made me take a bath after each game and it was during those days that she made a command decision.  After one particularly dirty game, when I finished my bath, there was a red ring around the bathtub.  My mom informed me that it was time for me to start taking showers.  I was filthy!
As filthy as I could get back then, it pales in comparison to walking with sandals on dry, dusty roads.  Such was the life of Jesus and His disciples.  The feet of the people who lived back then would become so filthy that they had to wash their feet before entering a home.  The host of the home would provide a water basin and a linen cloth to wash the feet of their guests.  The job of washing feet was often performed by a slave.  It was considered such a lowly and demeaning job that some rabbis taught that it was beneath any Jew to wash feet, even if they were a slave.
Throughout Jesus’ ministry, His disciples would argue over who would be the greatest among them.  Even at the Last Supper, they argued over this.  They had ignored Jesus’ teachings and rebukes when they argued over this.  He tried using a child to show them that to be great you had to be like a child.  He tried comparing them to gentiles and taught them that the leader must be a servant.  In spite of His teaching and visual illustrations, they still did not understand.  That is when Jesus rose from His last Passover meal to wash their feet.
He was their teacher.  They had watched Him perform great miracles.  They knew that He was great.  So when He took that water basin and began to go from disciple to disciple and wash their feet, they were caught completely off guard.  When He had finished, He told them, “You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.” (John 13:13-15).  Finally, they got the point!  But have we?
If we are going to be more like Jesus, we must become servants of all.  That requires us to think of others more highly than ourselves (Philippians 2:3), outdoing each other in showing honor to one another (Romans 12:10), and treating others as you want to be treated (Matthew 7:12).  These are all doable tasks, but it requires us to make it a priority in mind and action.  I want to strive to be a better servant because I want to be like Him.  How about you?
These are your Words for Wednesday. 
This Sunday at 10:45 at Ballentine Elementary we are celebrating our 10 years in ministry as we celebrate Homecoming with special guests Philip, Gina, Kylie and Tyler King.  Please invite your friends and family.  We will have lunch afterwards at the school and everyone is asked to bring a homemade dessert.  Have a great rest of your week!
In Christ,
Kevin

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