The Example

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The Example

John 13:1-17

Now before the festival of the Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. The devil had already put it into the heart of Judas son of Simon Iscariot to betray him. And during supper Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going to God, got up from the table, took off his outer robe, and tied a towel around himself. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was tied around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” Jesus answered, “You do not know now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no share with me.” Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” Jesus said to him, “One who has bathed does not need to wash, except for the feet, but is entirely clean. And you are clean, though not all of you.” For he knew who was to betray him; for this reason he said, “Not all of you are clean.”

After he had washed their feet, had put on his robe, and had returned to the table, he said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you. Very truly, I tell you, servants are not greater than their master, nor are messengers greater than the one who sent them. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.”

1 Corinthians 11:23-261

The Institution of the Lord’s Supper

For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

Real life examples is one of the best ways we learn. That is the reason that churches, marketing groups, and educators use personal testimony to get our attention and convince us that we should follow that example. Personal testimony is powerful and persuasive, and actions speak even louder than words.

Jesus washed the disciples’ feet. It was probably the last thing they or we ever expected Him to do here in His final hours. His last supper, His last requests, were spent serving others, like a prisoner doing community service before the execution – not because He was forced to, but because this is what He desired. It is not the action itself that so inspires us. It was what the action revealed about the heart behind it

When Jesus took this precious time to invest in others (and yes, some times are more precious than others) He showed them what all those teaching times looked like when they were lived out. Blessed are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, I say to you, love your enemies, take the plank out of your own eye first before you try to take the speck out of your brother’s eye… Jesus leads with a strong love that says, “I love you whether you love me back or not.” He was committed to dying to show us that love, even if no one else would go with Him. There was no stopping Him.

Paul was not there to get his feet washed, but his feet were washed by those Jesus had touched and the example lived on in him. The love, the service, the sacrifice… it was all there present every time the people of God gathered to celebrate the One who brought them together and made them who they were, and it still brings us together and transforms us today.

Who sets an example for you to follow?

Who is following your example?


  1. (Mt 26:26–29; Mk 14:22–25; Lk 22:14–23)

Temptation

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The Temptation of Jesus

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. He fasted forty days and forty nights, and afterwards he was famished. 

The tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.”

But he answered, “It is written, 

‘One does not live by bread alone, 
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” 

Then the devil took him to the holy city and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, 

‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ 
and ‘On their hands they will bear you up, 
so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.’ ” 

Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ” 

Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor; and he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.”

 Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! for it is written, 

‘Worship the Lord your God, 
and serve only him.’ ” 

Then the devil left him, and suddenly angels came and waited on him.”

– Matthew 4:1-11

How Courage Looks

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only wise eyes fit over

a child’s smile

festive in the gleaming

of a silent twinkle

on a slim precipice

staring into the depths

daring the dark

 

folly loosed at long last finding

freedom for an old soul

surrounding a gentle gaze with storm

twisting round tranquility with scorn

yet still sitting in the middle

dandelion in hand

 

undiluted eyes in dilapidated glass

whose face remains

unshaken

and brow free of frivolous fevers

fretting in the fires of starched imposters

 

jasper, amber, sapphire sublime

or darker hues for shaded views

with blue-trimmed shutters

drawn and drawing

 

drowning a world without promise of buoyancy

these pools reign in poverty

before barns of grief

 

birthing stars of clarity like the dawn

reaching through windows for new rays

 

ever vigilant, ever vibrant