“It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
One of the aspects of servanthood that’s often overlooked in the incident of Jesus washing the disciples’ feet is, the necessity to have people willing to be served. Peter didn’t want to be served. Both of his responses tell us that he didn’t want Jesus to serve him. “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet” (John 13:8) and when that didn’t deter Jesus, Peter went to the other extreme, “Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!” (John 13:9). Peter didn’t want to accept the gift of service being offered to him. He wanted to be in control and didn’t want to be seen as vulnerable.
This attitude is prevalent today. Some Christians are reluctant to let you serve them. It takes humility and vulnerability to accept someone’s gift of service. An independent person, who feels self-sufficient, isn’t going to appreciate someone trying to bless them, with tangible help or simply encouragement. They will ignore their act of service or try to pay them for it or in some way make some sort of recompense. I don’t see Jesus doing this. He accepts the woman who anointed his feet with gratitude and acknowledged her service to him.
Some non-Christians struggle with Christ’s claims because at an unconscious level they don’t like having to accept the fact that there is nothing they can do to earn their own salvation. Free gifts aren’t as easy to receive as we might think.
Often we rob others of the blessing of giving because we won’t receive from them. Let’s allow others to bless us with their service.