“When the ten others heard about this, they lost their tempers, thoroughly disgusted with the two brothers. So Jesus got them together to settle things down. He said, “You’ve observed how godless rulers throw their weight around, how quickly a little power goes to their heads. It’s not going to be that way with you. Whoever wants to be great must become a servant. Whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave. That is what the Son of Man has done: He came to serve, not be served—and then to give away his life in exchange for the many who are held hostage.” ~ Matthew 20:26-28 MSG
In the hierarchy of this world, servanthood would not rank at the top, for sure. When have you seen a butler or a maid in a Fortune magazine or listed on a Forbes 500 run down of the wealthiest in the land? Or Mother Teresa? Or Billy Graham? Their rewards are waiting on them in eternity.
Jesus’ standards are not of this world. His standards beckon us to put our own desires aside in order to meet the needs of those around us. That is absolutely contrary to the message this world promotes daily. It promotes the doctrine of selfishness at every turn. As a follower of Christ, we must reject the ways of this world because they propel us further and further from the center of God’s will for our lives. If we want to be great, if we desire to promote the kingdom of God, our vehicle must be through servanthood.
What does servanthood look like? It might look something like this:
- Volunteering in the church as a nursery worker, greeter, choir, youth leader, Bible study teacher, etc.
- Caring for the elderly and needy.
- Finding a need and meeting it simply to be a blessing.
It is far too easy to murmur and complain about things when, instead, we should search out avenues in which we can be an answer to someone’s need. A solution rather than a problem. A complainer says, “Somebody really should do something about this problem!” A servant says, “I can solve this problem.” It’s a matter of having a “Can do” attitude in obedience to Christ’s example throughout Scripture.
In John 13, we find the story of Jesus washing Peter’s feet. Initially he didn’t want Jesus to wash his feet, but Jesus told him that “Unless I wash you, you will not be clean.” At that, Peter urged Jesus to wash all of himself. Jesus instructs the disciples in this passage to wash one another’s feet. Surely He knew of the challenges with pride our shell of humanity brings.
Have you ever attended a foot washing service at church or a Bible study? The act itself is not to remove the dirt of this world, but to submit in servanthood to one another. The act of submitting is not as in slavery, but in mutual submission of Christ’s love and what He has done for us. It is an outward display of a heart surrendered to Christ on a very real level.
The benefits and dividends servants of Christ reap are many, but I think the greatest is joy! Those who serve in any volunteer capacity can attest to this. Most always, the reward is greater than any sacrifice.
And, so, I challenge you to find new ways to follow Christ’s example of servanthood, of loving the unlovable, of being Christ’s hands and feet extended to a lost and hurting world. It is through our love and compassion, we will spread the good news of Jesus.
Prayer: “Dear God, I accept your teaching of servanthood into my heart. I pray that you will fill me up with your love so that I may be a blessing to others. May I be a problem solver and may I spread your love and message of hope every where I go. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”