Six days before Passover, Mary washes Jesus’ feet and anoints them amid objections from some his followers. The day before Passover Jesus appears to draw upon Mary’s example when he washes the disciples’ feet, overruling Simon Peter’s objections. When Jesus speaks of his yoke being easy, one wonders how easy.
On the evening before the final Passover Jesus would observe in his earthly life, he sets an example of service and love. John’s gospel says Jesus “loved them to the end.” (verse 1) At times self-giving sacrificial service seems beyond our capacity. Has Jesus overestimated us in providing such an example and in telling us to follow it?
Reading ahead in John’s gospel, we see that Jesus’ followers sometimes get it right and sometimes get it very, very wrong. We balk at serving, and sometimes at being cared for. Maybe we wonder if Jesus’ yoke that calls us to serve is really all that light. We might be tempted to walk away-perhaps at a brisk pace! May we find consolation in those moments that Jesus loves us “to the end” and beyond.
Thank you for loving us to the end and beyond, to abundant life now and eternal life to come. May your love empower us to love others as you love us. Amen. — BSC