Life Rehab: The Decorated Life
July 30, 2018
Verse for the Week: John 13:14-15; “I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet. So you also should wash one another’s feet. I have given you an example. You should do as I have done for you”
We are in the last week of our Life Rehab project, and that means it’s finally time to decorate! This is the fun part, where we get to make a statement of who we are by staging our personal preferences of colors, textures, and artwork.
Given that our Life Rehab project is an inside job, we will be focusing on relationships—the relationships in which we decorate our life.
Similar to staging our physical homes, we often stage our life with relationships. We are drawn to certain types of people. And we invite them to help define our living space by displaying their individual colors of personality, textures of interaction, and the artwork of their thoughts, attitudes, and opinions.
Let’s face it, relationships, even those we’ve chosen with care and intention, are sometimes messy and unpredictable. Offenses happen, and we get into a habit of walking by the mess hoping it will just go away. Or we clear the emotional clutter by stuffing it into a junk drawer or a closet when company comes over.
Even so, God calls us into relationship because it’s in relationships that we discover our need for change, betterment, and growth. They tend to reflect our flaws, even magnify them.
With that in mind as we round the corner of this final week, we will explore the people that surround us. Those we invest time in. Where we expend our energy. And to whom we give our heart. Then we will look at how we can redesign, repurpose, and reboot these relationships to honor God and to enable us to have a more constructive interpersonal experience. One that reflects divine decoration.
As a point of reference, there is a funny song in the Disney movie, Frozen. It’s the Fixer Upper song, and it makes me laugh out loud every time I hear it. It’s quirky and honest. A fun way to look at our flaws and how others see us.
If you have time, look it up on YouTube. It will make you giggle. It will also set up this weeks theme because we all have flaws that need fixing, or at least forgiving.
I don’t know if you can relate, but I know, without a doubt, that I’m a fixer-upper. My life, my mind, my heart, my thoughts, my attitudes, my habits, my relationships—they are all in constant flux of contradiction. I need God’s word to teach me. I need His Spirit to counsel me. And I need God’s grace to make room for forgiveness in my heart.
Every day we are challenged to make choices in relationship. Do I invest or divest? Forgive or hold the grudge? Honor or hurt?
In order to grow in this type of oppositional environment, we need spiritual acumen. Simply stated, we need to have a solid foundation of spiritual principles to draw upon when faced with relational challenges. This type of spiritual understanding is a must or growth won’t last. So how do we grow in relationships?
Our scripture verse this week is an invitation into the workshop of Jesus. He models for us what to do in relationship by washing the feet of His disciples. We witness an external expression of an internal disposition among His closest friends.
You see, Jesus knew He was on His way to Calvary. He knew Judas was about to betray Him, and that Peter would soon deny Him. And yet, He wanted them to understand that even in the mess of their relationship with Him, and each other, this was the fundamental response.
Jesus’ washing of the disciples’ feet was a forerunner of forgiveness. His actions displayed a beautiful contradiction of sacrificial love—the kind that would be portrayed in haunting depth the following day as He hung on the cross.
Peter immediately denied Jesus. It seemed appalling to him that Jesus would do such a thing. But Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you can’t share life with me” (John 13:8, NIRV). Then there’s Simon’s response, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!”
What a picture of being all in! I too want all of me washed. Relationship with God and with others gets messy. The need for forgiveness and grace is staggering. Sometimes it’s too much. Sometimes it’s more than our hearts can handle. More than our minds can process. More than our souls can endure.
Even so, we are blessed to enter the workshop. To allow the tender hands of God to work the rough edges of indifference, to fix the broken hinges of friendship, to heal the hardness of offense, and finally wash the dirt and dust from our feet, our hands, and our head to reveal a new creation more equipped for healthy relationships.
Time in God’s workshop is never wasted because, under His mighty hand, you are a masterpiece in the making (Ephesians 2:10).
Every day is a gift. You will never have the opportunity to do any days over. They come, and they go. It’s time to make them count. I promise, you will never feel more satisfied than when you experience a life beautifully decorated with relationships that have spent time in the divine workshop and have been washed with the water of forgiveness.
Lord God, thank you for the relationships that I’ve had the opportunity to invest in. They are a gift to me, flaws and all. Teach me to honor you in my relationships by washing the feet of those in my life. And allow me the grace to let them wash mine. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Reflect and Respond:
This week, take some time evaluating your relationships. Which ones need some work. Do you need to humble yourself and wash their feet with forgiveness? Perhaps, you need to let them wash yours? Take each relationship to God. Ask Him for insight into what needs washing.
Hugs for a great week and remember, you are not alone. Be blessed and let your relationships reflect a divinely decorated life.