It’s often though that being in leadership is reprieve from the mundane and the menial, that one has ‘served their time’ and it’s the job of others. Folding/unfolding and placing chairs? Doing dishes? Or more?
When Jesus knew it was now time for him to go to the Father via the pathway of death, he offered one lesson. He didn’t teach it. He didn’t encourage them to practice it. He just showed them.
As they watched in startled and presumably silent bewilderment, he took off his outer clothes. Being in your skivvies was not exactly appropriate dinner attire. Then he took a towel and wrapped it around his waste and bent down. One by one he washed the feet of the disciples.
Washing modern day feet isn’t overly pleasant, but washing the feet of the dust of Israel was a different matter altogether. It was dry, dusty and it wasn’t uncommon for animal dung to be in the walkways. It was a job only for a servant.
And there was Jesus on bended knee, washing the feet of of those around the table. Presumably making himself “unclean” by the dirt and filth of the feet.
And then he said, “Do you understand what I have done for you?” (13:12). He didn’t want him to miss this lesson in his final moments and days.
“No servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him” v. 16.
Basically if I as your leader am willing to do the menial, the mundane and the messy, then how much more should you?
There is no one who has an excuse to not have calloused hands and dirt under their nails.