Have you ever found yourself in a situation in which you were vying with others for position? (208-3)
Leaders may have great power at their disposal but are still expected to act as servants to those on their team. Read Luke 22:24-30.
Jesus was having His final meal with His disciples just prior to His arrest, mock trial and execution. The Bible tells us He was eager to eat this meal with His friends so He could enjoy some close fellowship and help them understand His immediate future and some of what was in store for them over the next few days. But, during the meal “…a dispute arose among them to which of them was considered to be the greatest” (v. 24). Jesus used this discussion to shape their perspective. He helped them to understand that the power structure in the kingdom of God is radically different from what the world perceives as power.
In the world’s system it is considered normal for leaders to demonstrate selfish ambition, a degree of arrogance and to claw their way to a position of power by any means necessary. I have read books and magazine articles that praise leaders for getting to the top through tactics that damaged some on their team and even many in society. Society generally considers a leader to be naive if they try to get to the top any other way. Even Jesus’ disciples fell into this trap several times during their three years with Him.
Jesus pointed out that among Christians the leader is to be the one who serves best. Christian leaders will have different, gifts, strengths and styles of leadership, but all leaders need to have a servant’s heart. Jesus let His disciples know in verse 29 that He had authority (power) conferred on Him by God. He even had the ability and the right to confer that power on others. He was helping His disciples understand that just because He had unlimited power did not mean He should not function as a servant. In going to the cross Jesus demonstrated for His disciples exactly what it meant to have unlimited power at His disposal and still lead as a servant.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation in which you were vying with others for position? It is best to remember in such situations who really holds the power. Psalm 75 tells us that it is God who raises one up and deposes another. Jesus’ lesson in Luke 22:24-26 is that God desires leaders, even those with unlimited authority, to share in kingdom values and act as servants
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