Do you find it strange to have your feet washed by others? I do because my feet are extremely ticklish. But what if I told you that allowing your feet to be washed by someone else promotes spiritual growth? And it has nothing really to do with feet, water or physical contact.
Christ Jesus dined with a ranking member of a Jewish sect one evening. Before dinner started, a woman from town found out he was there and bought an expensive bottle of perfume. Luke’s gospel says, “Then she came and stood behind Jesus. She cried and started washing his feet with her tears and drying them with her hair. The woman kissed his feet and poured the perfume on them.” (See Luke 7)
The significance to us of this story isn't so much the physical act. Mary Baker Eddy once referred to the woman's tears as “tears of repentance.” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, 367) Jesus remarked that the woman showed such love for him because she had been forgiven so much – a way of saying she had progressed a great deal in her life under the influence of the Christ.
He allowed himself to be bathed in her love and gratitude. Why? Because it did him good to receive refreshment and support from one who had paid the price for progress in her own life, and who was willing to share the blessing with him.
To repent literally means to think again, to change one’s mind, correct mistakes and live right. Tears of repentance can take many forms:
Have you ever been bathed in someone’s tears of repentance? Have you ever been blessed by someone's efforts to grow spiritually and their willingness to share their experience with you, for you? By the correction of their mistakes? By the joy in making progress? By their gratitude for and expressing of pure inspiration?
Then you have had your feet washed by their tears of repentance. And I bet it felt really good.
Some resources for a good spiritual foot-washing today:
I have practiced Christian Science professionally in
some form since 1979.
But my journey with
Christian Science started
in a Sunday school
where as a young child
I was taught the Scriptures and some simple basics
of Jesus' method of
scientific Christian healing.
A significant experience
at the age of twelve
opened my eyes to
the great potential
of this practice.
After impaling my foot
on a nail,
I prayed the way I had learned
in Sunday school.
the pain stopped
and healing began.
By the next morning the wound had disappeared completely.
the great potential
of Christian Science,
there would be no