Daily Devotional

"Loving service in the midst of pain"

John 13:4,5,14,15

Vacation Bible School is in full swing. We are all blessed to see the children full of joy!  Such an important event in the life of a child!  There is another aspect of VBS that captivates my attention at the moment. THE VOLUNTEERS.

Many Volunteers are giving loving service in the midst of personal pain.

I am asked to pray with a volunteer for her family. She has tears in her eyes as she turns to serve the kids. One volunteer’s husband is fighting cancer. The joy flowing out of her is a miracle. I know another volunteer is so stressed with the troubles of her life—I was not sure she would be here. She is here joyfully moving the kids along to their next Station of fun. Another volunteer’s adult daughter was in ER last night. This volunteer is here serving.

As I look around the auditorium, I know this auditorium holds people with many burdens and heartaches. WHY are they serving? They are following Christ’s example of serving in love in spite of the pain. I see their love for the kids.

John 13:4, 5 ….”so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.”

John 13:14,15 “Now that I, your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.”

I can just imagine Jesus gripping a foot and gently wiping down the muck and mire.  Cleaning between the toes. The smell. The splatter.  All the while thinking of his upcoming agonizing sacrifice. I imagine Jesus looking deep into each disciple’s eyes, conveying His perfect love for them while they are dirty with sin.  When Jesus was done washing feet, He had their dirt on his hands, in his fingernails. His clothes held the splatter of their dirty feet.  He washed their feet with water.  Jesus knew that soon his body would hold the splatter of His own blood and the weight of their dirty souls. Jesus wanted them clean. Not just on the outside—but on the inside.
Jesus embraced the painful cross for us because of His great love for us.

The Volunteers have finished well today.  They have served in love in spite of their personal trials and pain. Jesus is pleased.

  • As a parent, I remember always washing my kids’ feet—especially before naps.  Next time you wash their feet tell the story of Jesus washing the disciples’ feet. Remind your kids that you love them…that’s why you wash them up and take care of them.
  • Create a mud puddle in the yard.  Let your kids play in it and get REALLY dirty.  Then wash them off. While you are washing the mud off, talk about how Jesus washed all our dirty sin from us when He died on the cross, so that our hearts can be clean. 
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