“So Jesus got up from the table, took off His robe, wrapped a towel around His waist, and poured water into a basin. Then He began to wash the disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel He had around Him.” – John 13:4-5
Last week we explored the need for Jesus to wash our spiritual feet. Letting Jesus wash our spiritual feet removes dirt and mud that accumulates over time as we have been laboring in the harvest fields. Click here to read Part 1 of this devotional from last week, “Are Your Feet Dirty?”
As Jesus washed His disciples’ feet in John 13, He didn’t let them drip dry and leave big, wet footprints everywhere they went. Jesus also dried their feet for them. And not just with some old dishrags—notice John says Jesus dried their feet with the very towel He had wrapped around Himself. Jesus dried the disciples’ wet feet by enfolding them with the towel of His own covering.
In Psalm 91, we can see the significance of what it means to be wrapped in the covering of the Most High God: “He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection” (Psalm 91:4). In drying the disciples’ feet with His own covering, Jesus was putting them under His spiritual shelter, symbolically placing His protection over them.
If you have ever done laundry, you probably know the comforting feeling of pulling warm, fluffy towels out of the drier as they are just finished drying. Can you imagine Jesus enfolding your wet feet into a fluffy, warm towel of His shelter and protection?
Once the disciples’ feet were washed of the buildup of dirt from extended Kingdom Laboring and dried with Jesus’ shelter and protection, they were ready to put on the spiritual shoes Jesus had for them to wear as they went back out into the harvest fields. Ephesians 6:15 tells us the right shoes for Kingdom Laborering: “[Equip] your feet with the preparation of the Gospel of Peace.”
Jesus gave these spiritual shoes of peace to the disciples later the same evening after He washed and dried their feet, telling them, “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27). Jesus gives us His peace—and we can wear this Good News of peace in the harvest fields like we would a strong and supportive pair of shoes!
My dad always says that we should not skimp when it comes to getting good tires for cars. After all, the tires are the only part of the car that actually touches the road. Wearing our spiritual shoes of peace is just as important for Kingdom Laboring as good tires are for cars. Our shoes of peace should be the first thing that touches the environments into which Jesus takes us for Kingdom Laboring.
When Jesus sent out the disciples to labor in Matthew 10, He said, “And whatever town or village you enter… if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town” (Matthew 10:11-14). Jesus was instructing the disciples to be sure they stewarded their shoes of peace and shook off any dust from their feet as they labored!
Our feet must be pretty important to Jesus. . . He wants to make sure our spiritual feet are not just washed clean, but also dried with His towel, and clothed in the right shoes of His peace for Kingdom Laboring!
When we allow Jesus to wash and dry our feet and then equip us with His shoes of peace, we become Kingdom Laborers prepared for the harvest fields. We are ready to see, stop, and spend time with the people God puts in our path, loving people and loving God. We are those about whom it is said:
“How beautiful on the mountains
are the feet of the messenger who brings Good News,
the Good News of peace and salvation,
the news that the God of Israel reigns!” – Isaiah 52:7
Have you allowed Jesus to not just wash but also dry your spiritual feet with His covering of protection and shelter? Set aside a few minutes to read Psalm 91 and let God’s promises enfold you. Are you wearing the right shoes for Kingdom Laboring? Jesus wants to give you His spiritual shoes of peace. Ask Him how you can choose today to walk in His peace. Then, when something happens that would normally worry or upset you, let your peace be the first thing that responds to meet the situation.
Miss last week's post? Read Part 1 of this devotional, “Are Your Feet Dirty?”