Summary: This is a sermon looking at Jesus washing the disciples feet and what an example that is to us to be servants beyond our own comfort zone.
** Dennis video (You Teach Vol. 2 - The Skit Guys - 8 min)
Can you think of a Stacy in your life? Take about 30 seconds and think about that person and what they did for you and for others. Think about their motivation. was it a neighbor who helped you when you couldn’t get your car started? Did they help you carry something heavy into the house? Took your garbage to the curb when you forgot to take it? Let you slide in line at the grocery store? Or maybe it was something a little deeper? Maybe it was taking care of your house when you had to go out of town because of a death in the family? or sitting in your living room listening while you cried your eyes out because you felt like your marriage was ending? Being there as you realized that there was life after retirement.
All of us have a Stacy in our life. All of us have had someone step inot our path and made us feel good about ourselves or helped us out.
[ Story about our Fire and the help we received - Pastor Ball coming before others, neighbors giving us drinks & food, money from churches we have never been too. ]
We see these selfless servants all over the place and in many shapes and sizes. Some of you may have seen the commercials by Liberty Mutual that show people doing small acts of kindness that spark other people to do more small acts of kindness until they come full circle. As Christians, these acts should be everyday occurrences for us. Not to have them done to us, but to do them for others. As people of God we should be doing all we can to help our "neighbors" out. Our lives should be consumed with "loving our neighbor" because God has loved us first.
When we talk about selfless servants, Jesus gives us a great example of what this looks like in John 13. I am going to jump around the chapter so bar with me
[ Read John 13:1, 4-5 ]
[ 1It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.
3Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. ]
Here we have the story of Jesus sitting in a room with the disciples. There was probably some chatter going on about the days events, things that they have seen and heard, the miracles Jesus had performed. But as the disciples were getting ready to eat, Jesus gets up, grabs a towel & some water and starts washing the feet of the disciples. Before we get too much into this story, let me set the scene a little further...
In Jesus’ day, people didn’t run around in their Nike’s or Reebok’s. Back in the day people wore just a few pieces of scraps wrapped around their feet and some padding. Today we call it a sandles. Also, back in the day, people didn’t have to worry about global warming or gas prices because they walked every where they went. And they didn’t have the super-sweet roads that we enjoy today. They just had open dirt roads that were used by both humans and animals. So as people walked on these dirty roads with their non-Nike sandles, their feet would get caked in dust, dirt and dung. How would you like to walk around with dung on your feet all day?
Anyways, because of all the gunk people would get on their feet, homes would have water basins at the door so people could come in and wash their feet. In the home of wealthier people, there would be a slave whose job it was to wash the feet of the guest. Usually this job was left for the lowest of the slaves because of how dirty and disgusting it was.
Back to the story of Jesus. When the disciples and Jesus got to where they were to eat dinner, there was no one their to wash their feet. Jesus had sent a few disciples to prepare this meal and they probably didn’t think about it. You can imagine that the disciples walked in thinking they would get a nice foot washing, only to be let down. Just think about how the 12 of them were thinking that someone should really wash Jesus’ feet, only to sit there not wanting to be the one to complete the lowly task. (expand on thoughts). I can see Jesus just watching the body language of his disciples and watching their faces as their minds wonder who should do the task. Maybe he was hoping that one of them would do it so He could use them as an example, but sadly none of them did.