Jesus knew that the Father had given him complete power; he knew that he had come from God and was going to God. So he rose from the table, took off his outer garment, and tied a towel round his waist. Then he poured some water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and dry them with the towel round his waist. (verses 3-5)
Read John 13:1-17, 31b-35
Jesus takes our normal notions of power and turns them on their head. He knew that he had complete power given to him by his Father. But he didn’t use this power to make his disciples into his slaves. He didn’t use his power selfishly to get his own way. Instead he used his power to serve his disciples and to free them to be people who love and serve God and each other.
Jesus uses his power and authority still. He uses his power to serve you. Just as he served you by giving his life freely so that he might save you from your sin, so he serves you now by continually giving you and all God’s people the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Because you are God’s child you are free. You are free to love God and to love all your brothers and sisters in Christ.
Lord Jesus, thank you for washing me clean from all the evil in my life. Let me follow your example of service, by serving you and the people you place in my life. Let me experience your love fully. Amen.
by Fraser Pearce, in ‘Renewed Hope for each Day’ (LCA, Openbook, 2000)
Visit the Daily Devotion archives page.