Week 6 - Lent Reflections

Week 6 - Lent Reflections

 

LENT REFLECTIONS: ENCOUNTERS OF JESUS Week 6 : Fr John Harris

FEET AND HEART           John 13:1-9, 12-14

Here we are in the Upper Room  with Jesus and the disciples at the Last Supper – a pivotal moment in the events of Holy Week where we see the heart of God.

 

Having completed the first part of the meal, Jesus gets up, removes his robe, takes a bowl of water and a towel, and proceeds to wash the feet of the disciples – a task usually performed by a slave on guests’ arrival, but now with a profound lesson – humble loving service, foreshadowing the supreme act of love the next day on Calvary.

 

In this simple act each of the disciples had a unique personal encounter with Jesus – and we might wonder what went through their minds. St. Luke tells us that at some point there was a little spat about who was the most important, so there were jealousies and treachery afoot – and Jesus knew what was in the heart of each.  Good old Peter – impulsive as ever – opening his mouth and putting his foot in it -  at first refusing, then almost wanting a bath;  James and John were there – the ‘Sons of Thunder’ as Jesus had nicknamed them, though John was also the ‘Beloved Disciple’; and Judas was there – each of the twelve receiving this simple, loving act of service. What were they thinking? After the meal resumed, Judas heard Jesus’ explanation for his actions - ‘If  I have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet’ – but he slipped away before Jesus’ command ‘As I have loved you, so you must love one another’.

 

In our service for Christ we must first let him serve us and make us clean – not in some spiritual pedicure  - but in the water of Baptism, and daily in our relationship with him, with his words in our hearts – allowing him to do with us what he wills, and not what we will.

 

As we look to the Cross this week and think of Jesus’ words bidding us to take up our cross and follow him, a priest of the early part of the last century observed that if we cannot take a cross, we can all take a towel – and indeed that Jesus offers us a towel – the towel of service –  performed for him in humble acts of loving kindness, in words and deeds. 

 

Questions :

¨ Is my heart truly open to Christ’s word and will?

¨ Do I bear envy or resentment towards anyone?

¨ Would I be willing to wash the feet of a treacherous friend?

¨ Where may I apply the towel of service?

 

       “O Lord, forgive us, wash my feet, that in my heart I may follow close to you”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COVID INTERRUPTIONS  SERIES :  A letter to the church:     

“ I give thanks to God for you…..”      DO TRY WRITING THIS LETTER

The Epistles in the New Testament are full of letters written to early Christian communities that sprang up in so many countries after the death of Jesus. If you read any of the letters to the Church and Corinth or Thessalonica you will note that they are a mixture of thanksgiving, prayer, praise, advice and warnings to those communities. 

If you were writing a letter to the Church in this place commenting on this Covid year: what you have seen, experienced and prayed for what would be the contents of your letter?

And what advice would you give to your brothers and sisters in Christ and to the institutional church as we prepare for the next stage of our journey and life together after the lock down begins to ease?

Do join us on Zoom on Wed 6pm, Friday 10am    or in person on Wed, Thur or Friday at 11am in on of our churches….see What’s on for more details