Continued from here.
I have a couple of relatives who make me cringe whenever we eat out because they behave in a less than kind and gracious manner whenever they are displeased with the service in a restaurant. I frequently remind them that their server has the ability to sneeze in their food, so they might want to consider this before responding. However, that’s not my primary motivator for extending grace and kindness to servers: I do it because God has extended me so much grace and kindness when I did not deserve it.
Jesus said that if you want to be first in heaven, you “must be the very last, and the servant of all” (Mark 9:35) as he was. Jesus deserved to be highly respected and treated as a king. Instead, he served others by washing their feet. If Jesus is truly your master, then you need to follow his example in how you treat other people.
When [Jesus] had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them (John 13:12-17).
Jesus could have pulled rank and ordered a disciple to wash his feet, but he didn’t. He humbled himself and served those who were beneath him. That is our example to follow. We need to look for ways to honor those who serve us. Serving a Christian should be a joy, not a challenge.
As an example, as I was waiting for my friend to come to the sinks in the bathroom, I noticed the janitor sweeping up pieces of paper towels that the Christian concert festival attendees had left strewn all over the floor. I walked over to her and thanked her for all she was doing to keep the bathrooms clean. After this, my friend came to the sink to wash her hands, noticed the janitor, and said the same thing to her, adding “God bless you!” She had no idea I had said the same thing – she was simply being Christlike in noticing this servant and honoring her. At a Christian event, this reaction to a janitor should be the norm, not an anomaly.
To be continued…
[Graphic: Cartoon of Grace with her hands on her heart saying, “Really appreciate.” Courtesy Bitmoji.]