Jesus washed the disciples feet. He washed Judas' feet and he knew that Judas was going to betray him. He washed the feet of the man who would hand him over to endure the worst pain imaginable and to die. He took Judas' feet in his hands and washed the dirt away.
To forgive someone after they have hurt you is hard enough. What if you were to forgive them for everything that they could do in the future? There is a point in all of our lives when we realize that the ones we love will never be the people that we need them to be. They will always be flawed. They will eventually hurt us, whether they wish to or not. Jesus washed the feet of his betrayer, knowing that he would hand Jesus over to death. Now that is forgiveness!
Ben Clance, our deacon, goes into the prisons and washes the feet of men on death row. These are men that have performed horrific acts of violence. They are about to die and right before they are to be executed, here comes this man, this old deacon, who kneels down and washes their feet. I see your dirt, he says. I am holding the smelliest, dirtiest part of you. And I wipe it clean. Your filth cannot repulse me. I will never stop serving you.
Gods love is not like human love. It does not go away when we betray. God does not need us to love Him back. No, God loves us despite our selves. God washes our dirty feet. Even before we betray Jesus. Even before we betray one another. Even then.
- The Very Rev. Kate Moorehead