First? Last?

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Isa. 58:1-12; Gal. 6:11-18; Mark 9:30-41

It is easy falling into the trappings of power and wealth.

Today in Mark the disciples are arguing about who is the greatest disciple.  Jesus gathers them all together and declares, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.”  He then took a little child and put it among them, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”

Power and wealth are certainly temptations – an attempt I think to try to get ahead.  It is easy here in the midst of American capitalism to think the answer to happiness or life is to gather more money or power.  Jesus speaks clearly and plainly, by taking a little child, who is an exemplar of powerlessness.  He is saying, “Forget about having 100 employees, or having a huge 401k…your job is to lift up the least among you…. Your job is to be a servant, not a ruler.”

How can we break the cycle of selfishness and embrace our calling to SERVANTHOOD?  How can we move to accumulation of wealth to abundance of giving?  How can we best model a God who came and emptied himself for us, giving his life and his love away?

What does it even mean to be first in our society, or last?  What is our calling?

 

– Matt

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