Upside Down and Inside Out
Monday - August 30th
Scripture to Read Today: Matthew 20:20-28
Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,
and whoever wants to be first must be your slave.
Everything about the life of Christ hits us as counterintuitive. The King of Kings born in a manger - not a palace. The first thirty years of His life lived in relative obscurity - not in the spotlight. Jesus never traveled even 100 miles from His home. He never held a formal position of leadership. He gathered a group of core followers who were from diverse but ordinary backgrounds. How Christ came, lived, and ministered would not have been the way any of us would have done it.
To us, everything about the life of Christ and His ministry was upside down and inside out. Humanly speaking, it didn't make sense. But, His kingdom is perfect. His ways are right and true. It is the kingdom of this world that is broken and wrong. Ultimately, it is our world and our perspective that are upside down and inside out.
As His followers, Christ calls on us to be how His Kingdom comes to earth. We are to live by what appears to be upside down and inside out. Late in the earthly ministry of Jesus, His disciples learned an important lesson about how leadership is viewed in His Kingdom.
Matthew 20:20-28 tells the story of how the mother of two disciples, James and John, came to Jesus pleading to have her sons be the princes in His Kingdom. She wanted her boys promoted to prominent positions of leadership above the other disciples. The other ten disciples heard about what James and John's mother had done. They were furious!
Jesus told His disciples that leading in His Kingdom would be all about serving others, not having authority over them. "Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave" (Matthew 20:26-27).
While this world says those who lead leverage authority and power over others, Christ's Kingdom values are upside down and inside out. They are counterintuitive. To lead, you serve. To rise up, you bow down. Humanly speaking, it makes no sense. But, according to God's way, it makes complete, perfect sense. It truly works.
If you want to influence others, learn to serve them - as Jesus served. Then, when you do, you lead!