I watched an incredible sermon last night; a message on Jesus' teaching on service... His reply to James and John about who would sit at His right hand and His left, come eternity.
The nuggets, hidden in Scripture. Matthew's account adds the tidbit of info often overlooked in this story. It wasn't James and John who asked this of Christ, but their mother, Salome... who just happens to be the sister of Jesus' mother Mary!
Jesus... this is Aunt Salome asking... where will your cousins sit, as rulers in Heaven?
Oh, the audacity!
Jesus, didn't miss a beat. "You don't know what you are asking." You don't know what that involves. You don't know what awaits the future of the ones who will hold such glorious positions. For what they will endure on Earth, you would not consider glorious.
The pastor talked about the propensity, however, for church leaders and pastors to get caught up in the mindset James and John held. Close to Christ. The inner circle of friends. Powerful ministry. Passion. Et cetera. Et al. Yet, how much self must one be concerned with to have your own mother inquire of Christ on your behalf, while you stand next to her in the same room?
The pastor's descriptor for such a mindset?
Isn't that a great adjective? And for a church whose pastor has this mindset, the experience can be as painful for the church as much as it is to have the physical condition! It's a good way to experience a change in ministry that is less than positive; for pride goes before the fall.
The desire to be great can be strong, for all it's worth; but if its' unable to humble itself to be the servant of all, then nothing will come of it. Not to mention, most of the time we have no idea what is in store, for those willing to serve. Nor do we have any idea what blessing we miss out on, by remaining focused on greatness rather than servanthood.
Join me, in prayer, this #seniorPastorMonday. Pray that pastors would retain, or return if necessary, a spirit of humility in service to the kingdom of God. Pray the spirit of greatness would not quench the desire of servanthood for those in ministry. May they not forget, of what God has accomplished in their lives and ministries before of who Christ is; not because of who they are. Pray a spirit of repentance, where called for... that pride would not derail, detour and destroy ministries that are currently on the verge of disaster or collapse as a result of an ingrown mindset. Pray the Holy Spirit intervene on the hearts and minds of those unable to acknowledge the fall is near; pray God's grace for those not ready for what's in store, should they not humble themselves before the Lord.
Healing for the ingrown;
From a place of humility.
Not for our greatness,
But for His glory.
Just a man, attempting to fulfill God's plan. Husband, Dad, Dreamer. Blogger.