The Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve.
Rabbi. Master. Lord. Son of Man. Emmanuel. Messiah. All titles given to Jesus. You can’t get much higher in peoples’ esteem than this. Yet, how did Jesus live his life? As a servant. A servant of God. A servant of the people. A servant unto his death. Ironic, isn’t it?
We certainly don’t live in a culture that promotes servanthood. No, we live in a culture that teaches us to “look out for number one” and to “rise to the top”. We’re encouraged to seek honors, degrees, money, and fame; for if we have those things we are successful. We’ve earned respect and prestige. We can have nice things and staff that can take care of them. We have power. Or do we?
Jesus was a not a scholar. He was not wealthy. He didn’t come from a family with prestige in the community. No, Jesus was from humble beginnings – – born in a barn, son of a carpenter, one of the taxpayers, not the tax collectors. He didn’t seek to befriend the Pharisees or the Scribes, didn’t seek to meet those with power. No, he dined with the fisherman, the prostitutes, and the unclean. He healed the leper, fed the masses, and embraced the child. All of the things that would surely not gain him power and prestige, but rather ridicule and disdain. Yet, 2000 years later, Jesus is still one of the most influential people in the world. Maybe we need to redefine power.
In the spiritual life, we seek to develop an intimate relationship with God. As we grow in this relationship, we begin to realize where the true power lies. It lies in the transforming love of God. A love that fills our hearts with so much joy and forgiveness, courage and peace, compassion and hope that we want, no need, to share it with others. We discover that seeing another person realize the incredible power of the love God brings us more happiness than all the money in the world. We find that the more we give, the more we receive. For isn’t this the case?……If everyone focused on serving others, wouldn’t we be served as well?