When I was a child, I was self-conscious and painfully shy. I was guarded, afraid of ever feeling vulnerable. You see, the world is an awkward place for introverts. We see people make conversation with ease, act very expressively, exude an heir of confidence in social situations, and otherwise put themselves out there for the world to see, all of which are befuddling behaviors to a person like me.
Today, I still am very much an introvert, but when I am alone with the Lord, I become an extrovert. I speak out loud. I am expressive. I stand confidently, not holding back. I am me, warts and all, in the presence of the One who created me, cleanses me, forgives me, and teaches me. I am vulnerable, trusting, and humbled — yet I crave it.
"Humbly Serving Christ" is an expression that has really resonated with me, as that is what I aspire to be. I love that Jesus knows everything about me, and loves me beyond measure. There is great freedom in knowing that I have nothing to hide (not that anyone can hide from God anyway). My profile picture attempts to capture this concept of freedom through humility. I try to spend as much time as I reasonably can going barefoot. I find it very freeing, yet humbling at the same time. This leads me to two verses where two heroes of the faith, Moses and Isaiah, found themselves barefoot and humbled in obedience to the Lord:
- “Do not come any closer,” the Lord warned. “Take off your sandals, for you are standing on holy ground.” Exodus 3:5 NLT
- the Lord told Isaiah son of Amoz, “Take off the burlap you have been wearing, and remove your sandals.” Isaiah did as he was told and walked around naked and barefoot. Then the Lord said, “My servant Isaiah has been walking around naked and barefoot for the last three years. This is a sign—a symbol of the terrible troubles I will bring upon Egypt and Ethiopia. Isaiah 20:2-3 NLT
Furthermore, Jesus demonstrated humility by washing the bare feet of His disciples:
Before the Passover celebration, Jesus knew that his hour had come to leave this world and return to his Father. He had loved his disciples during his ministry on earth, and now he loved them to the very end. It was time for supper, and the devil had already prompted Judas, son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had given him authority over everything and that he had come from God and would return to God. So he 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.
When Jesus came to Simon Peter, Peter said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”
Jesus replied, “You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will.”
“No,” Peter protested, “you will never ever wash my feet!”
Jesus replied, “Unless I wash you, you won’t belong to me.”
Simon Peter exclaimed, “Then wash my hands and head as well, Lord, not just my feet!”
Jesus replied, “A person who has bathed all over does not need to wash, except for the feet, to be entirely clean. And you disciples are clean, but not all of you.” For Jesus knew who would betray him. That is what he meant when he said, “Not all of you are clean.”
After washing their feet, he put on his robe again and sat down and asked, “Do you understand what I was doing? You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and you are right, because that’s what I am. And since I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other’s feet. I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. I tell you the truth, slaves are not greater than their master. Nor is the messenger more important than the one who sends the message. Now that you know these things, God will bless you for doing them.
— John 13:1-17 NLT
note: All Scripture verses taken from www.biblegateway.com.