After running around the backyard with my kids – in bare feet – we all needed a good scrub before my wife would let us walk through the house. So me and my oldest three piled into the bathroom. Then, in a profoundly ordinary moment, we discussed Jesus.
As I was crouched down in our tub in two inches of water scrubbing lots of little feet, I asked who else washed peoples’ feet like this. My daughter, Faith, piped up first, “We do! Mummy makes us do this all the time!” I asked who washed peoples’ feet like this a long time ago. “Jesus,” came a very lackluster, albeit unison response, from all three. I didn’t let their lack of enthusiasm stop me.
“Why did Jesus wash his disciples feet?” I asked. “To show he loves us,” Katy responded. “Why else?” I asked. Thomas chimed in and said, “Because he wanted to show them that even though he was a prince, he wasn’t afraid of doing work.” “Yes, he wanted us to love and serve others,” I said.
Thomas, 10, then went on to inform his sister Faith, 7, that he knows all the stories of the Bible – Adam and Eve, Noah’s Ark, Lazarus. Faith responded quickly, saying, “That’s only three.” Thomas, now irritated, retorted, “Look, do you want me to spend the whole night listing every single story in the Bible, or do you want to go play My Little Ponies together!?”
As they were shuffling out of the bathroom, I couldn’t resist telling them to, “Go and do likewise.” “What’s ‘likewise’ mean?” Thomas asked. It means “to do as I have done,” I said. Off they went into the night. I couldn’t help but wonder if Jesus felt the same sense of uneasiness, wondering if his disciples got the message.
But these are profound moments.
When we look at the life of Jesus, we see him teaching in profoundly ordinary moments. Sure, he got up on a mount or two, and taught in the synagogues, but he was also teaching in the most ordinary of places and circumstances. It was at a well, on a road, at a dinner table, or as he was passing by.
When we think of God, we’re often looking for the heavens to open, or to discover Him on a serene mountain top. More often, He’s there in two inches of dirty bath tub water.
Thanks for reading,
~ Ted Olson