James and John, two of Jesus' disciples, had fairly high opinions of themselves; they thought they deserved to sit on either side of Jesus in heaven. When James and John asked Jesus whether this could happen, Jesus gathered his disciples around and said this:
Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:44-45).
Jesus was the ultimate servant. He, the very Son of God, died in our place. He suffered so that we might be free from the chains of sin and death.
Being a servant is a challenging call; it's dying to our own desires, our own pride, our own self-entitlement. It's loving others as much as we love ourselves. It goes against our deepest inclination, but its rewards are great.
Dear God, we confess the times when we've elevated ourselves above others and lorded it over them. We ask that you empower us to be humble servants and love others as much as we love ourselves. In Jesus' name, amen.
Throughout This Day: Seek to walk moment by moment in the power of the Spirit, inviting him to show you all the ways he wants you to serve God and others. Thank Jesus often for leaving the glory of heaven to live among us as a humble servant, and ask that his heart for others becomes yours.
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