Day 28: Judas, can I wash your feet?
It is an unsettling moment. It happens to parents. It happens to leaders. It happens. It is the moment you find yourself in a situation when you know something about a person in the room that no one else knows, but everyone is about to find out… and you know you need to keep your mouth shut.
I remember the day our company was having a layoff. It was a lousy day. I vividly remember one manager in particular. He was going to have to deliver the bad news. He knew the news for days. It built up in him the way steam builds in a pressure cooker. The morning the notices were being given out, the managers who had to deliver the news were together. This one man had stayed up all night, fasting and praying that God would intervene. (God did not.) He looked a wreck. He had to sit through a number of meetings until the appointed time.
How we behave in those extreme moments of our lives reveals much.
How did Jesus behave when he knew “his hour”, his death, had come? Remarkably. Chapters 13 – 18 chronicle his behavior… and it is all about his concern for his “crew” (his disciples).
Here is how John describes it. “…when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart this world to the Father, having loved his own, he loved them to the end.” He did. As you read the next few days, keep in mind that this part of the story is one sweeping image of Jesus on the night before He died for us.
He begins with washing everyone’s feet.
Would you wash Judas’ feet?
Have you metaphorically washed the feet of someone who was actively betraying you?
Peter doesn’t quite get what is going on. He of course pushes in. “Wash all of me!” I love Peter’s heart. He just... well he is just so enthusiastic that he misses the point.
The point? Jesus leaves nothing to chance. “Do you understand what I have done to you?" (verse 12) The question partly reveals the teaching point. Jesus also reveals that someone, someone whose feet he washed will betray him. The teaching point is amplified. Serve others – including those who betray you. Wow!