Today’s Reading: John 13:1-30 (additional reading: Psalm 119:1-16 & Proverbs 15:29-30)
In 1904 the heir to the Borden Dairy Estate, William Borden, graduated from Chicago High School a millionaire. His parents gave him a trip around the world. During that trip he became burdened for all the hurting people he saw in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. He made a decision to prepare for the mission field. When he made that decision he wrote in his Bible the words, “No Reserve.”
When William Borden arrived at Yale University the next year as a freshman his passion for Christ was already kindled. He was disappointed to find the school morally bankrupt and the teaching filled with empty philosophy. So during his first semester, he asked a friend to begin praying with him before breakfast. As a result of his leadership other prayer groups began to spring up. And by his senior year, 1,000 of the 1,300 students were meeting in prayer groups. Many of those young leaders came to the Lord through that movement.
Upon graduation he was offered high paying jobs. But he turned those offers down and continued to pursue God’s call on his life. While making those decisions he wrote two more words in his Bible, the words “No Retreat”.
When he completed his studies at Princeton Seminary he sailed to China to work with the Muslims. On the way he stopped in Egypt to study Arabic. But there in Egypt he was stricken with spinal meningitis and within a month at the age of 25 he died. What his friends and family found written in his Bible was a great source of comfort. Added to the words previously written, “No Reserve, No Retreat” were two more words, “No Regrets”.
Wouldn’t it be a wonderful thing for you and me to arrive at the end of our earthly journey with those words written in our hearts, “No Reserve, No Retreat, No Regrets”?
Jesus’ example in today’s text gives us insight on how we too can finish our course with no regrets (How we can enter the ministry God has for us and fulfil His purpose for our lives). In this passage Jesus washes the disciples feet and in doing so teaches us a powerful lesson on servant-hood.
The first step is to know who it is we are serving. Jesus knew he had come from the Father. One of the great themes in the gospel of John is this sense of mission and commission in Jesus’ life. But here is some marvellous news; Jesus has now sent you and me with the same kind of backing. After his resurrection we will hear Jesus say to his disciples in John 20:21 “As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.”