READ John 13:1-17
REFLECT I had a mentor for a number of years who shared and modelled two things that he felt were critical to following Jesus…
- There’s no bottom to humility.
- There’s no lid on passion.
My friend’s name is Mo. I worked under him as a Youth Pastor for 4 years. He preached this, he said it, he lived it.
One of the things he felt was critical to a growing faith was serving people in practical and dirty ways. Every year, he took teams of grade 8 students to the poorest areas of rural Trinidad to work with suffering families, care for orphans, and build homes. He also rescued orphans from the dumps of Mozambique.
I noticed that the more Mo served like Jesus on the outside, the more Mo became like Jesus on the inside. He was changing. His heart was bigger, and his passion was growing stronger.
But as I got to know Mo, I discovered that there was a secret behind his serving. Something that made him so good at it.
Mo loves the verse in John 15:5 where Jesus says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
Looking back, as much as I saw Mo serving like Jesus, I saw him being served by Jesus.
Sometimes, in the morning, I’d find Mo praying on his knees or even on his face in his office. Or I’d hear him through the door singing to God. Connecting with Jesus. Being ministered to by Jesus.
Being served by Jesus.
When I’ve read and preached this passage from John, I’ve often focussed on how we need to be like Jesus and serve. And we do.
To think of the Son of God, getting on his knees and washing those dirty feet in a sand-and-sandal culture is striking. It’s a foreshadowing of a greater act of humility…the cross.
However, today as I read it, I’m reminded of the awkwardness of the moment. The choice to let Jesus wash our feet. To serve us. We see Peter having a really hard time with it. I’m sure the others didn’t know what to say. It would be uncomfortable and intimate to have Jesus touching and cleaning your dirty feet.
In our progress-oriented, busy culture, I think sometimes we hide behind being busy, even serving others because we feel uncomfortable letting Jesus serve us, speak to us. We’d rather do something “productive” than get on our knees in front of Jesus to connect with Him and ask Him to speak, to minister to us. Our desire to be busy serving on the outside is because of a fear of looking inside and letting God speak to what’s really going on. To reflect and listen.
What if you chose to be humble enough not just to serve Jesus but to be served by Jesus? How would your passion for Him and capacity to make a difference grow?
Imagine serving out of overflow and not serving on empty!
There’s no bottom to humility, and there’s no lid on passion.
As we come to the cross this week, the ultimate picture of Christ’s desire to serve us, consider this: He served you by taking on your sin because of a desire to make things right and to have a relationship with you. Take a moment to reflect on that. How can you honour his ultimate act of serving by connecting more with him?
BOTTOM LINE There’s no bottom to humility, and there’s no lid on passion.
LIVE Take a moment and look at your serving Jesus versus being served by Jesus ratio over the last month. Have you prioritized serving enough? Have you prioritized being served by Jesus enough?
Where could you make time to connect with Him more? OR Where could you find opportunities to serve him more?
PRAY Jesus, I come to you and thank you that you did not just come to serve, but to be served. Thank you for giving up your life on the cross so that I can connect with you. This week, show me how you want to serve me, and give me wisdom and creativity as I look beyond Easter to make it a priority to connect with you. Jesus, grow my passion for you, that I might become more like you. Amen.