Several years ago I got a pedicure on Maundy Thursday. As I recall, a parishioner had given me a gift certificate for a local spa. I had been pondering the Scripture from John that I would be preaching that evening, John’s version of Jesus’ last meal with his disciples before his crucifixion. John has his emphasis on foot washing instead of bread and wine.
“Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going to God, got up from the table,* took off his outer robe, and tied a towel around himself. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was tied around him.” (John 13. 3–5)
As Vivienne cared for my feet that Holy Thursday, I thought about what a loving act it is to care for another’s feet. Feet are lowly in more ways than one, and it takes humility to get eye to toe. The humility goes both ways–giving and receiving.
Jesus continues in St. John’s Gospel;
“So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you.” (14, 15)
Today I’m at the Manicured Mermaid on Tybee Island, and Sarah is caring for my feet. I’m thinking again about Jesus and how he cared for his disciples’ feet; how he said we are to do the same for others.
This Lenten Saturday I’m having Maundy Thursday thoughts. How can I serve in such a loving, humble way as Christ did so easily and freely with those he loved?
Tomorrow we’ll hear a Gospel about how lovingly and humbly Jesus received the care of a woman who extravagantly anointed his feet with costly perfumed oil.
Was Jesus’ servant care with his disciples inspired by this woman? Is this why he said, “Wherever the gospel Is preached it will be in remembrance of her?”