I have a podiatrist. Most folks can’t say that, but then again…most folks don’t have type II Diabetes. Once a year I see my podiatrist for a check-up. He inspects my feet and always encourages me to watch them carefully. Things can get squirrely pretty quick for a Diabetic.
My annual visit always sparks the following thought. Of all of the areas that a medical student could choose as a focus, why would someone choose feet? It goes without saying that there are other parts of the human form that provide equal, if not, greater challenge. Still, why deal with feet all day long?
Greater question still…why would Jesus lower himself to wash the feet of his disciples…of his creation? If you and I were to collaborate and compose a story of the greatest king that ever lived, would we include a scene in which they are dressed in rags, kneeling in the dirt, and washing the feet of another? What would the king possibly achieve with such an act?
“Act” is a good word for further consideration. For many, acting in such manner would simply be an act. It could lack sincerity. It could even be seen as manipulative. For others the act would reflect mere action…action implying that the act was a product of a lifestyle…a behavior…or a value. It could very well include an agenda or a motivation…but those things become secondary to the engagement itself. The act of serving someone else is performed out of one’s being.
The example that comes to mind is the story of Sam Walton and his 1979 Ford F-150 pickup. At the time of his death in 1992, Mr. Walton with worth over $100 billion and could still be seen driving around Bentonville, Arkansas in the beat up truck. When asked why he drove the truck, he inquired back, “What am I supposed to haul my dogs around in, a Rolls-Royce?” It is far easier to find examples of quite the opposite attitude. Many can think of people who are quick to display their wealth, success, or influence for all to see.
Perhaps it’s the insecurity of people that causes them to flaunt their wealth or authority? Perhaps it was the confidence of Jesus that allowed him to wash the feet of the disciples who would desert and betray him. I propose this question for all of us. Is it possible to know such confidence?