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Find a place where you can be still, without interruptions.
You might like to light a candle as you begin to remind you that Jesus is the Light of the World.
‘Of the jobs that have to be done in your house, which ones do you hate the most?'
Think about the jobs, which you hate the most.
Look at Jesus’ words from the Beatitudes;
‘Those who are humble are happy. The earth will belong to them.’
‘Jesus was explaining another value of God’s kingdom: humility. This means, quite simply, that people who are a part of God’s kingdom should put others first, before themselves.
We’re going to read a story now, a story about something that Jesus did, and is remembered by Christians all over the world on the day called Maundy Thursday, which is the Thursday before Easter. There are lots of jobs that we hate to do, but read carefully to see if you can spot what the horrible job was….and how Jesus showed humility by doing it.
Jesus and his disciples had finally arrived in Jerusalem for the Passover celebrations, and they were all gathered together in a room as the meal was being served. Whilst they were waiting, Jesus got up from the table, took off his heavy outer clothing and wrapped a towel around his waist. He poured water into a basin and knelt down on the floor. Then he began to wash the feet of his disciples, drying them with the towel that was around his waist. The disciples were astonished.
Later on, when he had put on his outer clothing again and was sitting once more at the table with them, he asked ‘Do you understand what I was doing for you when I washed your feet earlier?’
‘I have set you an example of how I want you to treat each other. I, whom you call ‘Master’ and ‘Teacher’, have washed your feet, and I want you to do the same for each other. No-one is too grand or important to serve another. God will bless you if you act in this way.’
Did you spot the horrible job?
Washing someone’s feet in Jesus’ day was a revolting job, because people mostly walked everywhere and their feet got really dusty or muddy, depending on the weather. They didn’t have baths or showers regularly like we do, so I expect that their feet got really, really smelly! Usually the job of washing feet was done by a servant – and it was the worst job in the household. When Jesus washed his disciples’ feet, he was demonstrating that he loved them enough to get down on the floor and clean their dusty smelly feet, to serve them.
At the end of the story, he told them that he wanted them to do the same – not actual foot-washing, but having this attitude in their hearts, wanting to serve others. In many churches on Maundy Thursday, people will wash each other’s feet to show that they want to have this same ‘servant’ attitude, a humble heart.
In the stillness now, I invite you to think quietly to yourself... you might like to close your eyes...
We’ve heard how Jesus showed humility by washing the feet of his disciples, and said that he wanted his followers to follow his example. He taught that we will be happy if we are humble. There will be many chances each day for us to show that we have a ‘servant heart’, like Jesus, to put the needs of other people first, even if it sometimes means doing a job that we really don’t like.
Think quietly to yourself about one small thing that you might do today for someone else.
Thank you for this story that shows how Jesus came to serve. Help us to learn how to serve each other, to put the needs of other people first…to show humility: to be more like Jesus.