Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.” (Mark 9:35)
There’s something unattractive about being a servant. The hit TV show, “Downton Abbey,” has shown the life of the servant class from the old British society, and while being a servant carried a level of respect among the working class of people, few servants would choose their lives over the lives of those they served. The upper echelon of society received the benefit of people waiting on them hand and foot, and no one would choose a life of serving over a life of being served. That is, no one before Jesus.
Jesus shook things up a bit when he came to earth. In a society that valued status, Jesus stepped in and said those who want to be first must become servants of everyone else. What an odd thing to teach his followers! And yet Jesus didn’t just teach it – he lived it out by offering his life up to death. Jesus was the ultimate suffering servant who looked not to his own needs but to the needs of others. And more than simply modeling that lifestyle, he said that his followers needed to do the same.
How ready are you to be a servant of those around you? What about your neighbors? Your family? Your friends? Your coworkers? Do you look to put the needs of others before your own? It’s when you do that that you’ll truly find yourself being a servant.
Father, it’s so easy to fall into the believe that what I want is the most important thing, and no one else’s need or wants are of value. Help me to follow the model of Jesus, who gave up his life for all people so they might be reconciled to You. Make me a servant today and every day.