Washing the Feet of Your Spouse

“Love isn’t what you feel, it’s what you do consistently over time.” —Mathew L. Jacobson

It is my belief that once you are married, you should consistently set time aside every year to wash each other’s feet.

To wash someone’s feet you need a servant’s heart and humility – two vital ingredients for any marriage.

Prior to Jesus washing the disciples’ feet they had been arguing among themselves as to who was the most important, who was favored more, who had more authority.

Often, before we know it the same thing happens in our marriages.  We start feeling that we are doing far more work than our spouse, we earn more money, our spouse does not do enough for us . . . the list is endless.

“So he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.” —John 13:4,5 

“Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.  Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.  Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” —John 13:14-17

In other words, in a marriage, you are both equal.  You may have different responsibilities but one person has no right to ‘lord’ it over their partner.

All arguments and activities have to stop when your feet are being washed.  It is a time to look at the bowed head of your spouse, to be silent and to reflect on your marriage.

If you are doing the washing it is a time to gently massage your partner’s feet, to think about what these feet represent.

Every night when my grandfather got home from work, my grandmother would kneel and take his shoes off and gently slip his slippers on to his feet. His feet represented his love for her. He was a motor mechanic and from Monday through to Saturday he stood on those feet all day to earn the money that enabled her and their children to live.

It is an excellent opportunity, whilst washing your spouse’s feet, to reflect on what those feet mean to you.

Oswald Chambers says this about Jesus washing His disciples’ feet:

“We see the Incarnate God performing the greatest example of drudgery – washing fishermen’s feet…The inspiration of God is required if drudgery is to shine with the light of God upon it.”

There are times when marriage becomes ‘drudgery’ and it is then that you need the inspiration of God to shine a light on your marriage.

Kneeling and washing your spouse’s feet is one of the best ways to allow God’s light to shine in your marriage.

Photo Copyright: maxfx / 123RF Stock Photo


Noelene Curry lives in Cape Town, South Africa with her Irish husband, three daughters, one dog and two rabbits. Noelene is a public speaker and author of God’s Promise for Families and All God's Stones. Her passion in life is for couples, not just to stay married, but to be happily married. She loves reading, walking, traveling and bush camping. You'll find Noelene writing about God’s redeeming love and His ability to restore people and relationships at www.godspromise.co.za.

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