“There comes One after me who is mightier than I, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to stoop down and loose.” Mark 1:7
Who is Jesus to you? What is your relationship to him? What kind of attitude do you bring when you come to him? Does he owe you? Do you owe him? How much? How little?
Jesus would say of John that Baptist that “among those born of women there has not risen one greater.” Matthew 11:11. No one greater than John. This of a man that wore the simplest, the roughest of clothing. Apparently clothing doesn’t make the man. This of a man that ate the most basic of diets. Apparently the diet doesn’t make the man either. John was neither simple or basic. He was steadfast, courageous, righteous, eloquent, insightful, and, according to the words of Jesus, great. So great that there had never been anyone born on earth greater than he.
Yet, when John compared himself to the Messiah, the one whom God had called him to prepare the world to receive John said he was unworthy to untie his shoes.
John isn’t here talking about a school boy prank, that’s something you’d do to a social equal. John is comparing himself to the actions of a servant, stooping down to unfasten the straps securing the foot ware of the one he serves, and he’s saying, “I’m not worthy to be his servant.”
Many times we feel loving and grateful toward Jesus. But it’s a love and a gratitude comparable to that of a child to a parent or a friend to a friend. But here’s the reality. If we were to compare what Jesus did for us it would be more like this; in the middle of a battle, in the midst of the most contentious of wars, the commander of the forces opposed to us set aside his arms and went behind enemy lines so that he could save as many of his enemies from the destruction of their warfare against him as he could. Even though it meant that we would eventually take him and kill him as the worst of criminals for his efforts.
We’re not worthy of Jesus. What he does doesn’t tell us so much about us as it tells us about him. How much he loves. How faithful he is. How far he will go for those that he loves.
In a large sense our giving of ourselves becomes not our getting for ourselves what we need but giving to Jesus what he deserves, not because we’re so much but because he’s asked for us. He’s asked for us, because he loves us