Cleaning The Bathroom

February 13, 1999
by Michael Steckel

John 13:5 – After that, [Jesus] poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciple's feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. (NIV)

When I was in the Navy, one thing I learned was how to clean. We were always cleaning the ship. Every weekday the berthing places (sleeping quarters) had to be cleaned for inspection. Each department that shared that space had to provide a person to help clean it. I used to hate cleaning that place and I especially hated cleaning the head (bathroom). Since I was an electronic technician, I felt that cleaning the head was below me. I was smarter than most, as I thought, so why must I go and clean up after others?

Since then, I have matured in my Christian faith, and I have come to realize that my attitude was completely wrong. I was not above the task to be done. I was no better then anyone else on that ship. As I read John 13, I saw what real service was, when Jesus washed the feet of the disciples. At that time, washing the feet of someone was thought of as such a lowly job that even a slave could refuse to do it. Yet in this chapter, I saw our God get down on his hands and knees and wash the feet of men. With this example Christ has set for us, I have come to realize that I am not above any task which I may be called upon to do. Jesus did not come to be served but to serve. It is the love of God that motivates our service to others. I may still grumble sometimes when I have to do things, but I remember this story in John and I soon realize how selfish I am, thinking I am above something. It is the word of God that shows me in the end what I must do.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for setting the example of what service should be. We pray that with your example, we may swallow our pride and humble ourselves, so that we can serve others and you may be glorified. In Jesus' name. Amen.

About the author:

Michael Steckel
Fairbanks, Alaska, USA

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