A Servant’s Heart

John 13:12-14 WEB

So when he had washed their feet, put his outer garment back on, and sat down again, he said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? [13] You call me, ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord.’ You say so correctly, for so I am. [14] If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.


Washing feet was a servant’s task. Religious and civic leaders did not wash their own feet. A servant washed their feet when they gathered. So, it was almost an offense to the 12 for Jesus to wash their feet. When he is done washing their feet, he puts his outer wrap back on and tells them to go and do likewise. This was probably an offense as well. The 12 thought they were going to rule the 12 tribes of Israel in eternity (Mt 19:28). It would not have been natural for them to take up feet washing. But that is what Jesus asked them to do. During Jesus’ ministry, he showed the example of servanthood. He was on a mission for His Father, and it required humility and service. Jesus did not mind.

Jesus wants us, his disciples, to feel the same way. We are to be mission-minded as we become servants to one another. Things are not so different today. When people imagine themselves having a large ministry, it is not natural to think about feet washing. But that is what Christians are called to do. We must bow our hearts before the Father in humility and willingness to serve as He served. That may mean washing feet, or it may mean taking that poor family to the food bank. There are many ways to serve.

Jesus served. He was the disciples’ Lord and Teacher. He is also our Lord and Teacher. We must not look at Jesus and say, “He was God, of course he could.” We must not use his Godhood as an excuse not to imitate Him. Rather we must say to ourselves, “the Lord and Teacher served both the lost and the saved. I must also serve.” When we serve, we are opening avenues to plead with others to be reconciled to God through Jesus. To the lost, that is salvation from eternity without God. To believers, it is encouragement in the Lord as we refresh one another.


Lord, please give me a heart for service. Help me recognize opportunities throughout my day to serve. Help me lay down my own interests and care for another’s interests. Help me trust you with myself and with others. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Daily Forgiveness

John 13:6-10 WEB

Then he came to Simon Peter. He said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” [7] Jesus answered him, “You don’t know what I am doing now, but you will understand later.” [8] Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet!” Jesus answered him, “If I don’t wash you, you have no part with me.” [9] Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!” [10] Jesus said to him, “Someone who has bathed only needs to have his feet washed, but is completely clean. You are clean, but not all of you.”


In the Bible, we read that all people have sinned (1 John 1:8). Moreover, it says anyone who denies they have sinned is a liar. So, to those of us who have made Jesus our Lord and Savior, we need to repent daily. We are saved out of the world but we live in the world and we trudge through the muck and mire of the world. Therefore Jesus needs to wash our spiritual feet daily with his forgiveness. The above passage says we are already clean but we still need daily forgiveness.

We still need the dust and briars cleaned off our feet. As we walk with the Lord, we do so on the stage of the world. Thus, during our walk, our spiritual feet get dirty. This can be hard for Christians to face. We recognize with our heads the Bible says all have sinned, even those in Christ. However, seeing our own sin can be difficult. We need moments where we have insight into our own selves. We must look in the mirror of self and see the area shrouded in darkness.

When we can see our sin, we are being honest with ourselves. It may make us feel inferior to others to admit we have sinned. In the world, we are taught not to let others see our weaknesses. But in Christianity, we are praised for our weakness because it gives place to God’s strength. In the above passage, Peter wanted no part of Jesus washing his feet. Yet the Lord told him it was necessary for him to be completely clean, so he complied.


Lord, please help me evaluate my spiritual health accurately. Reveal sin to me and wash me clean with your forgiveness. Help me grow in Christian maturity and repent of the sins you show me. Give me the courage to accept your correction. Help me face the truth. In Jesus’ name, amen.

God Rewards the Faithful

John 7:16-18 WEB

Jesus therefore answered them, “My teaching is not mine, but his who sent me. [17] If anyone desires to do his will, he will know about the teaching, whether it is from God, or if I am speaking from myself. [18] He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory, but he who seeks the glory of him who sent him is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.


These verses help us accurately discern the motives of Christian teachers. In the above verse, Jesus said to see who is being glorified. He taught if the glory falls on the teacher, what they are saying is not from God. However, if the glory goes to God, the teacher is trustworthy.  

It is dangerous to take God’s glory. Those who take God’s glory are in imminent danger of the Lord breaking out against them (Isa 10:15, Acts 12:21-23). God jealously guards his glory. Furthermore, God clothes who he wants with his glory, for his own purposes (Isa 48:11). Not that it is some sort of lottery (Heb 11:6). If we want to be chosen for God’s glory, we must bear God’s shame (Mat 16:24-25). Any one of us can pick up our cross and carry it with joy (1 Pet 2:20-21). To rejoice in shame and suffering is a holy thing (Rom 5:2-3). It’s the type of faith that God wants to plant in the hearts of others (Isa 61).

God wants to glorify people who willingly serve without glory (1 Cor 15:43). There are stories in the Old Testament that show people chosen for service in a seemingly random manner (Jud 4:4, 6:14, 13:25,). Take Moses for example, his family showed faith when they saved Moses (Exo 2:1-3). Then, Moses showed great faith when God spoke to him (Exo 3:4). Through faith, Moses’ family won the Levites an inheritance guarding the Lord’s glory (Exo 28:1-3). We can clearly see by the example of Moses and his family, God rewards the faithful (Psa 27:13).


Lord Jesus, please forgive me for talking so much about what I have done and so little about what you have done. Teach me to honor you and give you all the glory. Humble my heart, Lord, that I will joyfully carry my cross. In Jesus’ name, amen.

I See You, Jesus

John 6:67-70 WEB

Jesus said therefore to the twelve, “You don’t also want to go away, do you?” [68] Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life. [69] We have come to believe and know that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” [70] Jesus answered them, “Didn’t I choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?”


I love this passage because twice it shows the Lord’s human vulnerability. Jesus and the disciples just experienced a ministry disaster. The Lord, teaching under the inspiration of the Spirit of God, told everyone to eat his flesh and drink his blood. Nearly all of Jesus’ followers left.

Can you imagine someone telling people to eat and drink them? The disciples who did not truly believe did not trust, so they left. And Jesus was left with the twelve. Notice in the verse he is specific when he says, “Didn’t I choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?” Jesus was just a little proud. Just a little human. Just a little vulnerable. And so easy to overlook.

Part of the joy for me in reading the Bible is finding these little nuggets. Every verse that tells me about Jesus’ humanity is golden. More, verses in which I can see Jesus’ personality are special treasures. Jesus is our special treasure, and I love meeting him in the Bible.


Lord Jesus, please help me notice scriptures that give insight into your walk as a human. Help me know you better. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Working for God

John 6:27-29 WEB

Don’t work for the food which perishes, but for the food which remains to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For God the Father has sealed him.” [28] They said therefore to him, “What must we do, that we may work the works of God?” [29] Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”


Believing is our only job. So, what does believing look like? Is it something we say or something we do that demonstrates belief? In 1 John 3:23 WEB, the Bible says, “This is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, even as he commanded.” That’s interesting. It looks like God commands us to believe in Jesus. However, Jesus commands us to love one another. So, believing must look like the love of Christ coming out of us.

Well, that leads to the next question, what does the love of Christ coming out of us look like? It looks like carrying your cross. It looks like obedience. Jesus loved us so much he died a horrible death to see us safe in the love of God. Jesus loved us by laying his life down. We should do the same. Believing Jesus looks like humbling ourselves to the same behavior he demonstrated. If anyone wants to do the works of God, he must believe in Jesus. Believing in Jesus means imitating him. Believing Jesus looks like giving ourselves away.


Lord Jesus, please forgive me for all the times I have demonstrated unbelief. Help me trust your ways so that I begin to imitate you and thereby come into obedience. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Eating what Jesus Eats

John 4:34-35 WEB

Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me, and to accomplish his work. [35] Don’t you say, ‘There are yet four months until the harvest?’ Behold, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and look at the fields, that they are white for harvest already.


Jesus’ food is to obey His master, the Father. Likewise, our food should be to obey our Master, Jesus Christ. In Mark 16:15-16 WEB the Bible says, “He said to them, “Go into all the world, and preach the Good News to the whole creation. [16] He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who disbelieves will be condemned.” Telling everyone the good news, that Jesus paid all the price there will ever be and that all people can be saved by simply trusting Christ, is our command from the Lord.

There are other commands from Jesus as well. In fact, The Beatitudes are full of his direct teachings. In Chapter 5 of Matthew, we are taught to be meek, gentle, patient, and willing to suffer persecution for the sake of righteousness. Chapter 5 also calls believers to account for their thought life. In chapter 6 we are taught that purposely doing good deeds so that others see is evil. Moreover, we are taught in chapter 6 to forgive others, or we will not receive forgiveness, and not to worry about money or anything else. This is because we cannot have anxiety and trust in Jesus at the same time. Moving on to chapter 7 Christ declares the point that if you do not obey him, he does not know you and if you do not confess Him before people, He will not confess you before the Father.

What feeds your spirit? If your spiritual food is to have your own way and achieve your own goals, then you are not feeding on the same food as Jesus. Our food, according to Mark and Matthew should be to obey Jesus. Furthermore, our food should be too focus on the righteousness of the heart and to fulfill the great command. We are to bring the lost into the Kingdom. Some will try to say that the great commission in Mark was added after the original writing. That should not deter us. God allowed it to come into the final collection of works in the HOLY BIBLE and we will honor it if we honor God. People who rail against these verses claiming either they are culturally irrelevant or wrongfully included in the Bible, should not hinder us from eating wholesome spiritual food. Namely, obedience to Christ as the Bible teaches.

Obedience to Christ is a critical matter for believers to accomplish. Learning how to trust Christ for victories is part of the journey. However, the willingness of heart to obey Christ and to be spiritually fed on his every command is the principal matter for each believer.


Lord Jesus, please forgive me for not being attentive to your commands. I repent Lord and I ask you to help me learn your commands so that I can obey you more fully. It is my heart’s desire to be obedient Lord. Please lead me into victory. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Wellspring of Life

 John 4:11-14 WEB

The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. So where do you get that living water? [12] Are you greater than our father, Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank of it himself, as did his children, and his livestock?” [13] Jesus answered her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again, [14] but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never thirst again; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”


Does the well you drink from give you rest or do you have to go to the well to draw over and over? The well of our best thinking will never give us rest. Nor will the well of tradition. The well which gives rest and springs eternal is Jesus. Not the Jesus of our best thinking, nor the Jesus of our forebears. It is the Living Word that comes from a vibrant relationship with Jesus Christ which becomes a spring of eternal life.

Are you tired? Do you feel worn out? Does taking a vacation make you feel better or do you come back and find you are still exhausted? If so, something is not right. This is one of those places in our lives where we have a view into the truth of our faith. Isaiah says that our hearts are wicked (Isaiah 64:6). The Apostle Paul also speaks of the wickedness and deceit within our hearts (Romans 1:18). Therefore, most of us cannot see ourselves. Rather, we see what we want to see. What we need is a way of seeing the truth that goes beyond our own idealism about ourselves. The issue of being exhausted versus refreshed is one of those places in our spiritual journey where we can evaluate ourselves.

If you are tired something is not right. You should have a well springing up within you that always refreshes. A living wellspring of spiritual wellness. If not, it’s time to put idealism down and look deeper. What beliefs are your works based upon? Do you take the knowledge you have and demand an explanation? God does not seem to be inclined to explain himself. He has told us a great deal about himself in the Word. However, when we take information about God from the Word and fill in all the missing pieces with our own ideas, we are going to become bankrupt. We simply cannot make up a God in our thinking that refreshes.

We also cannot take someone else’s faith and feel refreshed. Yes, we can be encouraged by others’ faith, but eventually, we need to stand upon our own faith. Do you honor your parents by keeping the traditions of faith they passed down? Honoring our parents is good but relying on tradition rather than the Living Voice of Jesus within ourselves is a work that does not bring rest. Are you reading the Bible to learn how to live? Or are you relying on what you have been taught to make your life decisions? The Bible has the power to go inside and spring up a well within. It must be the anchor of our faith.

How is your prayer life? The ultimate spring of life within is the Voice of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We must cultivate our relationship with Jesus in the same way we must cultivate any healthy relationship. We read the Love Letter He left us, the Bible. We also talk to Jesus and listen for the small still voice of His response. We must have both pieces in place or we may fall into delusion. However, it is wrong to avoid hearing the Living Voice of Jesus within because of fear of being deceived. Rather we should be familiar with the Bible so Satan cannot influence our thinking about God, His nature, and our relationship with Him. When this is our truth, we will have rest even as we work for the Lord. He will be a spring of eternal life within, eternal life we can drink from and give others to drink.  


Lord Jesus, please forgive me for looking in the wrong places for my rest. Please help me read Your Word and pray. Help me enter through the narrow gate to a life of spiritual rest and wellness. Please let my life be a place of refreshing both to me and those to whom I am sent. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Wise yet Harmless

John 4:1-3 WEB

Therefore when the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus was making and baptizing more disciples than John [2] (although Jesus himself didn’t baptize, but his disciples), [3] he left Judea, and departed into Galilee.

Jesus epitomized the scripture that says, “Behold, I send you out as sheep among wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” (Matthew 10:16 WEB) When he learned he had attracted the attention of the Pharisees he departed Judea and went to Galilee. In chapter 3 of John, John the Baptist pronounced Jesus as the way to heaven. John as much as declared Jesus the messiah. Jesus’ response to this was to pack up and leave the area.

Jesus understood the Pharisees hated him. While professing zeal for God, they demonstrated with their behaviors that they actually despised God. What they liked was the glory of standing before the people. Jesus was threatening their glory.

Have you ever heard a minister preaching compromise? Why would they do this? The exact demonstration of hatred for God may have changed, but the root cause of the sin is the same. Namely, a desire for people to glorify themselves rather than God. Preaching the untainted gospel has with it the risk of people rejecting the messenger.

Jesus was often scorned and rejected by those to whom he ministered, On the other hand, many were saved as well. This is important to notice. Jesus experienced both rejection and acceptance. He told his disciples to shake the dust from their feet when they were rejected. Literally, to pronounce condemnation on those who rejected their message.

Can you imagine a modern-day preacher declaring condemnation for rejection of the gospel? They would be heckled and counted as a hypocrite for such preaching. People still have little tolerance for the untainted message of the gospel. That message is that Christ alone saves those whom he will and rejects the disobedient. Telling people that Jesus will save them is not too hard. On the other hand, telling people they must be obedient to the whole Bible or face eternal torment is not accepted by most people.

People want salvation to be a democratic affair. As if we can choose which passages are relevant while declaring others irrelevant. Some of this has been caused by modern-day zealots. Ministers who teach a heartless gospel of condemnation drive the lost away from God. They preach to a mouth-foaming crowd that wants confirmation that they are better than everyone else. But the word of God does not counsel this. Rather, it says to be wise as a serpent but harmless as a dove.

As Christians, we have to learn to declare the truth from a place of love for the world. The Father desires the world to be saved (John 3:16). We can declare condemnation for the lost in love. We can plead with the lost to turn their hearts fully to the Father through the grace of Jesus Christ. We can demonstrate obedience thereby duplicating it in those who are new in the Lord.

Lord, please help me walk wisely while remaining harmless to those with whom I share the gospel. Please forgive me for being immature and heartless. I’m sorry for withholding love from the lost. Please forgive me. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Compromise or Belief

John 3:34-36 WEB

For he whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for God gives the Spirit without measure. [35] The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into his hand. [36] One who believes in the Son has eternal life, but one who disobeys the Son won’t see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”

Cultural compromise is destroying the modern church. A desire to be accepted in the world has caused entire congregations to become irrelevant to the mission of God. Namely, to bring the world into the victory of Jesus shed blood on the cross. John 3:16 WEB says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.” To fulfill the mission of this verse the church has compromised in the hope of becoming relevant to the world. However, what has happened is the church no longer carries the true message of the gospel. You cannot compromise and be on fire for the Lord at the same time. You must believe Jesus to serve him and demonstrate that belief through obedience to the word of God.  In Matthew 7: 21-23 WEB we are instructed on the reality of compromise, it says, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. [22] Many will tell me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, in your name cast out demons, and in your name do many mighty works?’ [23] Then I will tell them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you who work iniquity.’ It seems like the church has forgotten this passage of scripture. Instead, a strong delusion is upon much of the church. People in this situation are convinced that they are in the right relationship with God. Yet, they compromise with the world. The desire to be liked and accepted has masqueraded as a desire to reach the lost. But reaching the lost is dependent on holiness and righteousness. We can understand that righteousness comes when we are obedient to the word of God. When that righteousness is coupled with a humble heart we can become holy. Holiness is the ability to give people access to the Father through the Son. Jesus was the holiest and when he died, he released his most Holy Spirit to guide the world into truth. The church must first accept the truth to become righteous and thereby holy. The truth is, no one believes who does not obey. The compromise of the church with the world is leading many who think they are safe into a collision course with hell. In Romans 2:8 it says, “but to those who are self-seeking, and don’t obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, will be wrath and indignation,” The word is clear, and it is urgent that every Christian accept that no one can compromise a little. This is because a little leaven works through the entire loaf. And each person will get more of what they already have. If one is compromised a little, then that person is compromised. And if compromised they will continue to become more compromised. However, if one truly believes they will obey. In John 14:23 it says, “Jesus answered him, “If a man loves me, he will keep my word. My Father will love him, and we will come to him, and make our home with him.” Thus, because of obedience, their obedience will grow. God will make His home in that person’s heart. The result is their ability to bring the lost into a saving relationship with Jesus, or their holiness, will also grow. This is how we become relevant to God and the world. We must renounce compromise and return to obedience.

Lord Jesus, please forgive me for compromising with the world. I recognize I must return to obedience, and I ask you to help my unbelief. I want to be accepted on the final day Lord, please come in and save me from disbelief which results in disobedience. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.

Only You God

John 3:31 WEB

He who comes from above is above all. He who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all.

We know that Jesus is God’s son. Jesus is from above, he proceeds from God and when he speaks, he tells of heavenly realities.  The rest of us are not God. We are not a part of the triune, divine, Godhead. We are from beneath and we speak of earthly realities. When we spend time in the presence of God the Father, or, God the Son, or, God the Holy Spirit, we are receiving heavenly things. As we try to share a testimony of the healing we have received or the revelation we have received, we can only share from our earthly position. We can see, we can receive, but we cannot come from heaven. We must share everything that God tells us from our limited earthly perspective. On the other hand, when we lead people to God, they can receive heavenly things from the one who is in heaven and speaks from a heavenly perspective. Matthew 4:4 WEB says, “But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’” We must get past wanting to constantly share and testify. Those things do have their place. In Revelation 22:17 WEB it says, “The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” He who hears, let him say, “Come!” He who is thirsty, let him come. He who desires, let him take the water of life freely.” So, testimony paves the path of faith to the hearer which helps them receive from God. However, the critical thing is to bring people to God so they can receive from him themselves. In Hebrews 4:16 NIV it says, “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” However, we are not the Father. It is not our job to correct and discipline. In Hebrews 12:6 WEB it says, “Let us therefore draw near with boldness to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy, and may find grace for help in time of need.” There may be times when the Father leads us to pray for the sin of another, but it is a rare thing when God asks us to confront another believer with their sin. In Matthew 7:4 WEB it says, “Or how will you tell your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye;’ and behold, the beam is in your own eye?” We also are not the Son. We can testify of our healing, but we cannot heal another. We did not receive the strips on our backs or wear the thorns on our heads. In Isaiah 53:5 WEB it says, “But he was pierced for our transgressions. He was crushed for our iniquities. The punishment that brought our peace was on him; and by his wounds we are healed.” Even if God uses us to pray for healing with another person, anything that happens is of the Lord. In James 5:14 WEB it says, “Is any among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the assembly, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord,” Finally, we are not the Holy Spirit. If we trust the Holy Spirit to lead others into a right relationship with God and righteousness, we will not constantly think we have a special word for others. Titus 3:5 WEB says, “not by works of righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy, he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,” So often believers fail to recognize their lack of faith. You see these people giving other people “words” or trying to bring correction to other believers. Those things are not our job. Our job is to bring people to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit so that God can save them, heal them, and lead them into righteousness. The Bible says, “in whom you also, having heard the word of the truth, the Good News of your salvation—in whom, having also believed, you were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, [14] who is a pledge of our inheritance, to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of his glory.” (Ephesians 1:13-14 WEB)

Lord Jesus, please forgive me for wanting others to listen to me more than listen to you. I ask you to forgive my pride and I repent of this demonic attitude. Please help me direct others to you. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.