Last night I was reading in John with my Bible study about Jesus washing his disciples’ feet…
“It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.
Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.”
It struck me that Jesus became a servant. It would have been radical to just wash their feet, but he went farther than that. He took off his clothes and became the part. It was an incredible act of humbleness for him to become like a servant and to touch his disciples’ feet. Peter couldn’t believe that his teacher, the man he looked up to and followed, would do something as disgusting as this.
He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”
Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”
“No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.”
Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”
“Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!” John 13:1-9
When Jesus responded to him, saying that Peter could only be a part of him if he allowed Jesus to wash his feet, Peter’s response was incredible. If I can only be a part of you by being washed by you, then wash all of me! Don’t just wash my feet! I want to be sure that I am a part of you!
Of course, Jesus washing his disciples’ feet was a metaphor for him washing their hearts, and we can only be a part of God if we let Jesus wash our hearts. There is no half-way. Either you let Jesus wash your heart, or you refuse to be clean.
So many times I say, “It’s ok, God. I can handle this.”
And God says, “No. I need that too. I need the things you think you can deal with and the things you know you can’t handle. I need the things you’re holding on to. I need the things in the back room of your heart that you’ve been hiding. If you want to be close to Me, you need to trust Me, and you need to let Me wash you. And here I am, showing you how you need to be clean.“
I pray my response to God is like Peter’s. “If this keeps me apart from you, then take it from me! But don’t stop there. Take anything that could keep me away from you. Lord, I don’t want any possibility of not being with you. Take all of me.“
I want to give God all of me. I want to give without inhibition. I want to give without looking back at what I gave. I want to do whatever it takes to remain a part of Christ.