Wednesday, July 13

“Do you know who I am?”

Scripture: 1 Chronicles 28-29, Psalm 81, John 13

John 13:3 Jesus knew that the Father had given everything into his hands, that he had come from God, and that he was going back to God.


John introduces the story of Jesus washing the disciples’ feet with this insight. Jesus knew who He was, where He came from and was going. He knew that everything was His. Knowing all that, He took the role of the lowest servant and washed the disciples’ feet. The surprise, of course, is that usually a statement like this would be followed by indignant demands to be served. But Jesus was different. He came not to be served, but to serve (Mark 10:45). 


Here’s one of my favorite stories:

A heavily booked commercial flight out of Denver was canceled, and a single agent was rebooking a long line of inconvenienced travelers.  Suddenly an angry passenger pushed his way to the front and slapped his ticket down on the counter.  “I have to be on this flight and it has to be first class!” he insisted.  

“I’m sorry sir,” the agent replied.  “I’ll be happy to help you, but I have to take care of these folks first.”  The passenger was unimpressed.  “Do you have any idea who I am?” he demanded in a voice loud enough for the passengers behind him to hear.

Without hesitating, the gate agent smiled and picked up her public-address microphone.  “May I have your attention, please?” she broadcast throughout the terminal.  “We have a passenger here at gate 7 who does not know who he is.  If anyone can help him find his identity, please come to the gate.” 

As the man retreated, the people in the line burst into applause.

Have you ever said, or heard someone else say, “Do you know who I am?” in a way that demands special treatment? 

Jesus knew who He was—and there was and is no one higher, no one greater. Yet He didn’t say, “Do you know who I am?” as a way to demand special treatment. Instead, He said it to set an example. “I am your Teacher and Lord, and I have set you an example that you should do as I have done: serve one another.” (V. 12-17)

When you know who you are, you can serve. You have nothing to defend, nothing to prove.

Prayer: Lord, help me gladly serve those around me today, rather than thinking that I deserve to be served.