This week I have been humbled, which for those who are familiar with me know – this is no small feat. On Monday I had surgery to correct an injury from a year ago playing volleyball (which incidentally was a re-injury from almost 40 years ago). The surgery was same-day outpatient, and so I assumed the recovery from said surgery would be minor and short.
I could not be more wrong.
It is humbling to be disabled to the point where one cannot stand or sit without assistance. It is humbling to be disabled to the point where one cannot dress oneself, or bathe oneself, or provide for oneself in even the most basic of ways.
It is humbling to have coworkers who care enough to stand in the gap and cover for me. It is humbling to have a church family from Alaska to Africa lifting me in prayer for healing and recovery. It is humbling to have to sit (or lie down) and wait and watch for the Great Physician’s healing work to be done.
But what has been most humbling is the outpouring of love from my family. A spouse who assures me it is her joy to wait upon me hand and foot. A son, who without question or hesitation drops to his knees to gently and lovingly place socks upon the feet I cannot reach. A child who wants to forego one of his favorite activities and sit with me, just so I won’t have to be alone.
It is humbling to be on the receiving end of such selfless, self-giving love.
It is humbling that it takes a (hopefully!) temporary disability for me to see the kind of love others have for me.
It is humbling to know that this is the kind of love God has for me, for you, and for all the world. A self-giving, self-sacrificing, other-serving kind of love. No ulterior motives. No self-serving schemes. Just love, for the sake of love.
It is humbling. Perhaps, as it should be…
From the Gospel of John, the thirteenth chapter:
So Jesus got up from the table and took off his robes. Picking up a linen towel, he tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a washbasin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel he was wearing… After he washed the disciples’ feet, he put on his robes and returned to his place at the table. He said to them, “Do you know what I’ve done for you? You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and you speak correctly, because I am. If I, your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you too must wash each other’s feet. I have given you an example: Just as I have done, you also must do. I assure you, servants aren’t greater than their master, nor are those who are sent greater than the one who sent them.