Being Loved: Week 4 | Day 5

“Love one another as I have loved you,” Jesus said after washing the feet of his disciples. Br. Luke Ditewig notes that love comes out of being loved; it is in allowing our own need to be seen and touched that we can then reach out and touch others’ lives.

Question: Who is “washing your feet”? How are you “washing” others?
Share your answer in the comments below or using #5marksoflove
Activity: God Sighting Map

Transcript: Jesus said, “Love one another as I have loved you.”  He said this having gone around the table kneeling down to wash each of his friends’ feet.  To wash the feet that were dirty, messy, they stank.  Feet I think are figurative for our vulnerability, which we really are when we show up.  Things that we don’t necessarily want to show others, it’s risky, it’s emotionally exposing, but it’s real, which we are right now.  And like Peter, we often say, “Jesus, I don’t want you to wash my feet.”  But Jesus’ response to Peter and us is, “If I don’t wash you, you have no share with me.  I need to wash your feet.  I love you fully as you are.”

I find it’s easier for me to go and wash someone else’s feet, to go out and serve the world, to listen to others, to care for others.  But I, too, need to be washed.  Love comes out of being loved.  We, too, need to accept another’s invitation to let our feet be washed, to show up as we are, to share our story honestly, to share our emotions to be real.  And having accepted love from that then we go and wash feet tenderly, listen to others’ stories, help them in many ways.

So a question for today, who is washing your feet, and then how are you washing others?

– Br. Luke Ditewig

Question: Who is “washing your feet”?  How are you “washing” others?

Week 4 Activity: God Sighting Map
This week, create your own “God Sighting Map,” which locates God’s presence and activity in your surroundings and in your interactions with others. Start close to home, then move out into your neighborhood and community. Who or what has been a sign of God’s love to you today?

Watch Video Guidance | Download Activity as PDF | Sample Completed Activity


  1. Bryan Cook on March 24, 2017 at 09:42

    Our marriage has succeeded for 45 years in large part because we allow each-other to “wash each-others feet”; indeed we welcome it and it sanctifies our love.

    In my recovery, I have reconnected with myself and my feelings to the extent that I now have several friends with whom I can engage in mutual “feet washing” over a coffee, though always in a mutually respectful way.

    It may seem a little odd, but even musical jam sessions and meetings of my haiku society are in themselves mutual “feet washing” using other sensuary means.

    And I always feel lifted, refreshed, disencumbered and more able to cope with life after being “cleansed”….is that not also an important part of the joy of baptism that John the Baptist gave?

  2. Verlinda on March 23, 2017 at 23:50

    Lots of my friends are going through rough times at present, and it feels like I’m doing a lot of foot washing. As others have commented, that’s easier than letting your feet be washed. I do have a couple of very close friends (one I see weekly for lunch) who are excellent listeners, and remind me that even as flawed as I am, I am loved. My EFM group also washes my feet, which is a true blessing in the context of that community.

  3. Nancy A Best on March 23, 2017 at 23:19

    I believe we can also see feet as a metaphor that has us reaching out to the those burdened and hurting. The stranger disheveled, sitting in another place and time. What is the source of this man’s angst and distress? What voice can remove the dust of a mind in need? Our washing could be just stopping and acknowledging his presence washing his need of a loving word of care. Washing with the waters of faith when someone is hurting. Paul provides this guidance in Philippians that ‘God is with us in all and we may do all with his help’. We can live this with just the washing of words in asking and listening. Hearing and allowing him to express his fears or cares and challenges with you becomes a blessing in itself. We may not be able to do much more while providing him with our ‘washing’ can also open up a new dialogue that provides the cleansing. We are all on God’s time and that is a critical promise.

  4. Kristi on March 23, 2017 at 18:27

    This is a challenge for me. I’m used to taking care of others most of the time. My nature is to give and be nurturing both at home and at work. I’m uncomfortable with feeling very vulnerable even with people that I am very close to in my personal life. I think it’s because I don’t want to feel weak and I don’t want to appear as if I am struggling and need someone to help me. I have an extremely independent mother and I think she has set a standard for me that I can’t help but try and emulate. It feels good to me to do something by myself and know that I’ve done a good job or that I’ve been successful at the task. I know I need to do better at getting my feet washed but it’s very hard for me.

  5. Beth Creager on March 23, 2017 at 12:45

    I apologize up front for not remembering the whole story
    A priest was in meetings all day and when a break came, he walked out into a busy plaza. The place was bustling with people and as he walked across, he noticed a homeless person coming toward him. He thought that he should put his faith to practice and approached the man. When he faced him, he spoke and asked the man if he could bless him. The man looked up at him and said, “May I bless you?” The priest looked around, and felt uncomfortable, not sure how to respond. Minutes passed and the priest remained standing. Then he knelt in front of the man and bowed his head. The man placed his dirty hands on the priest’s head and blessed him. Then he continued to walk across the plaza. The priest remained kneeling, but raising his face to the heavens, he felt tears running down his cheeks. The he to rose and continued on his way.
    I don’t remember the priest’s name and again apologize for taking his story and sharing it with you.

    • Susan on March 23, 2017 at 17:31

      It’s a beautiful story. I have a feeling the priest wouldn’t mind your sharing it. We often find receiving much harder than giving, but both are humbling. Perhaps receiving is more so. Thanks for the lovely message. It must have been a very moving experience.

  6. Rhode on March 23, 2017 at 07:33

    It is so much easier for me to wash than to be washed. Allowing jesus to wash my “feet” first opened my eyes to see there is no dirt too unclean no situation too strange or impossible…sort of like the commercial..”.dirt cant’ hide from intensifed Tide.” I have been gifted with a circle of friends who encourage, listen and provide the soap of emotional support and feet-washing advice wrapped in endless humor. They are rarely surprised but never daunted by the dirt we accumulate by just living.

  7. Sue on March 22, 2017 at 15:25

    This is a difficult one for me at present.Times are a bit challenging and some of my usual supports are not available.
    When this happens I notice that I don’t pick up on approaches from others to ‘wash my feet’, so I miss out on that support, and it is true,I give less as well,and what I do give is less real, it comes from my head rather than my heart.

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