Saturday, January 08, 2005

Give Me Your Feet

He’d leave soon. We tried not to think of it as we followed Him, but you could tell He was between Heaven and Earth. He’d said as much. I saw in Him a kind of love-broken weariness, and it reminded me of how the poet prophet Isaiah described Him: a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief.

He’d set the table, and we sat in the upper room, preparing for the feast. We were tired, and hungry, but glad to be with Jesus. The pungent scent of roasted lamb and bitter herbs rose like incense in the room. Our cups were lined like guards before us, full with wine. Night, as thick and palpable as fog, surrounded the house. The flames on the candles He lit bowed and rose in the breezy room, as if they too, worshiped Him.

He said to each of us, “Give me your feet.”

We grew silent, each of us removing our sandals.

I watch Him move across the room, dressed in the garment of a slave. Dear God, Jesus is on His knees, pouring water on our feet. The Son of God, the Son of Man, washing us as if the pitcher contained, then released His own tears, slipping between our toes, the filth of the world falling to the ground, now hallowed by His presence.

He sure knows how to make a mess of things.

I whispered to Him, “Thank you, Jesus.” Hot salty tears rolled from my cheeks, and mingled with Jesus’ hand when he reached up to wipe my face.

What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will after this,” He said to me.

He cleansed us all, every one of us, even the one who would betray Him.

“Do you understand what I have done to you?”

His brown eyes shone in the candlelight.

You address me as ‘Teacher’, ‘Master’, and rightly so. That is what I am. So if I, the Master and Teacher washed your feet, you must now wash each others feet. I’ve laid down a pattern for you. What I’ve done, you do. A servant is not ranked above His master; an employee doesn’t give orders to the employer. If you understand what I’m telling you, act like it—and live a blessed life.”

Act like it, and live a blessed life.
He makes things so simple.

It wasn’t long after that that He had gone from us, only to return, and go again, leaving us with His Spirit. And even now, as I reflect on that day, I hear the sound of His voice, resonate, yet soft, and feel His breath warm on my face, as he leaned into me and asked me, ‘give me your feet.’

I think of this every time I come across a world weary traveler, sand-scorched, hurting, and vulnerable, looking for Jesus, needing water, and trusting his sole to me, as I wash it, cradling it in the circle of my hands.

Give me your feet.

Isaiah. 53:3, NKJV.
John 13:12-17, The Message.


violet said...

So this is what your bus thoughts from the other day led to. Beautiful and compelling! Now I need to remember to respond, whether the feet are shod in tattered Nikes or alligator pumps.

upwords said...

Now see, this is what happens when I let you read my chapters! You call me out for all the world to see. LOL You've made me see once again what this story is all about. I'll have to put you in the acknowledgments twice now. :) Be blessed, Claudia, you and your Beautiful Feet.


Paula said...

Beautiful friend. Thanks.

Hey--gracereign could use a comment this week from the ragamuffin diva. I think I know your answer to the question I posed . . . but I'd love to read it there anyway, girlfriend!

seeker of truth said...

He sure knows how to make a mess of things....

LOVE that observation...where would we be if He didn't?? Thanks for the insight.

slb said...

this really is quite breathtaking. i'm always a bit reticent about even thinking about placing myself in a reflective position, nestled within the gospels. like, "the passion of the christ" brought me close enough, man. lol

it's more than humbling, more than startling, more than awe-inspiring to even venture to *think* that jesus' flesh touched the flesh of others and purified it upon contact.

it's even more staggering to think that He doesn't even have to exist on our earth and in the flesh to cleanse us upon contact.

this entry reminds me of that. thanks for the reminder. :-)

Anonymous said...

"He cleansed us all, every one of us, even the one who would betray Him."

Yeow. And I can't even stand being around people who are merely boring. Much less betrayers. Ain't gonna wash those feet, no thanks.