After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. – John 13.5
Back in Bible days, there were no Nike shoes. They wore sandals. There were no controversial ads, no sandal burnings, and the sandals that you wore represented no political affiliation . . . man, those must have been the days.
Anyway, feet would obviously get nasty . . . really nasty. Between miles of dusty roads and hours of heat and sweat, feet got dirty. It was customary back then to have a servant or someone wash feet when they entered a house. At the very least, a basin of water was provided so you could do it yourself. Can you hear the mamas back then? “You’ll not track dirt in my clean house!”
One day, the disciples had been walking and had dirty feet. They obviously didn’t want to wash their own feet, nor did they want to wash each other’s feet. When Jesus stood up to take on the job, one of the disciples got really defensive, “You’ll never wash my feet, Jesus!” The Lord’s response is amazing to me, “If I don’t wash you, then you have no part with me.”
Maybe this is where people adopted the phrase “cleanliness is next to Godliness,” even though it isn’t found in the Bible. I’ve often thought a lot about how this applies to me in my own life. Here is my conclusion:
I walk in this world. It isn’t my feet that sweat and pick up dirt . . . it is my mind. I hear things throughout the day that I wish I hadn’t heard. I hear words I don’t say, and jokes that I should never tell. Sometimes they are from people, sometimes from television and movies, sometimes it is avoidable, and sometimes it isn’t. Many times after walking in this world for a day or two and not being with God, I want so badly to just get around him. Sometimes I find that I just can’t. It’s like I know he will say, “Don’t track that dirt in my house!”
So what do I do?
Well, I allow him to do what he did for his disciples that day. I allow him to take the time to pour water on my mind with his word. I allow him to take my sin and my filth and place it upon himself. Basically, I let him clean me up. The question is, will I let Him? There are really only two responses to this. I could be like Peter and say, “Oh no, you’ll not clean me up.” Or, I could just allow him. I could sit; let him wash me, clean me up, and just cry over the fact that he has to do it so often. I could be so thankful in my heart and be reminded all over again that salvation comes from God and God alone. I could be thankful that righteousness comes from him and him alone. I could be so thankful that He made a way for me, not just to go to Heaven, but also to be clean right here and right now. He made a way for me to enjoy him right here and right now.
It is kind of funny to me that many call Christians weak people in need of a crutch who have been brainwashed. It many ways, it is true. He can wash my brain anytime. I love it when he makes me clean.
There is no one like our God.