Monday, January 25, 2010

Humility

One more iconic moment from The Savior's life. The italics are mine, and I won't try to hammer the point too much, but let's give it a read:

John 13:
4 He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.
5 After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to awash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.
6 Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet?
7 Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter...

12 ...So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you?
13 Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.
14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.
15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.

There's certainly one cringe-inducing part of the body that no one wants to wipe clean on someone else's body. Nurses certainly do this without much thinking. Just another day on the job, perhaps. Nonetheless, there are several ways of working through the "ick-factor". Love is the most effective. A patient who is invalid cannot take care of themselves for obvious reasons and is utterly dependent on someone to handle those functions. Mothers do it all the time with their babies and they have no qualms about taking care of those...uh...issues. (Getting to love, however, take a challenging path: Humility.)

Since I haven't been talking about feet, let's do so now. Feet are disgusting. We walk on them. Keep them covered in shoes. Fungal infections. Weird looking toenail issues. The smell. And if you have body hair... Yeah, Hobbit feet.

The Savior, though, vividly demonstrated what is easily perceived to be...a lowly act. John the Baptist certainly was boggled by The Savior's insistence that John baptize him, for Jesus had no literal need to wash away any sins. Here, the Savior strips down, lowers himself in a subservient position, and washes the feet of his apostles.

Obviously this left Peter feeling uncomfortable, that their roles should be reversed. Yet, once again, The Savior exemplifies that if the He does it, then all others must do likewise.

We should never feel as though we are above someone because of our social or financial status. But we do. It is the frailty of our existence. To fight this impulse, we must serve ALL, to sit and sup with the publicans and sinners as The Savior did, as much as it might cause us to cringe at the very notion.

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