In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: . . . He made himself nothing” (Philippians 2:5,7).
The president adjusted his pants to squat before his 14 cabinet members. The secretary of agriculture squirmed uneasily. The president smiled, then carefully removed Mr. Agriculture’s shiny leather brogues. Then his navy dress socks. The feet within looked like they hadn’t seen the sun in a good while. Didn’t smell great either. But the commander in chief cradled Mr. Agriculture’s bare toes and lowered them into a basin of water.
Cut! That scene won’t play on a Hollywood screen anytime soon. It isn’t realistic. It wouldn’t complement our tough foreign policies. No commander would act like such a nothing.
But nothing is the status that Christ chose. Our Commander in Chief, in very nature God, did not work his rank to his own advantage. Instead, he made himself nothing. Not just a foot washer, not just the Roman soldiers’ buffoon, but a criminal on death row. He obediently served and suffered and died to make us sinful, selfish nothings into his brothers and sisters.
And now nothing is our beautiful vocation. Not because we are worthless, but because Christ made us priceless. As we interact in the checkout line, at parent-teacher meetings, at church and work and in our homes, we share Christ’s mind-set. We put others first. We cheerfully shed our “rank” and rights. We wash feet (or floors or clothes or dishes), knowing that we serve our Servant Savior.
In him, nothing is everything.