DVRising to the Bottom"Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many." —Matthew 20:26-28What does it mean to strive for lowliness? Can the apparent contradiction of this goal sometimes cause false humility? What is true humbleness—what are the attitudes behind it?Do you have any secret goals in life? Some people aim at their goals, but they’re lousy shots. Take the Lord Jesus’ disciples, for example. The mother of two of them aimed high. She wanted her sons to have the highest rank among His followers. Jesus warned that such a status was no picnic. It would cost them their lives. Then Jesus told them the real secret of success in the company of Christians. Aim low.
Modern corporate executives might reject the Lord Jesus’ protocol for rising through the ranks. But Christians are in the business of serving others. Jesus was able to start out at the bottom and stay there. He was the perfect servant, obeying God and serving people. He was the only one who could reach low enough to save us, and His job was successfully completed upon His resurrection. Now, as any good leader does, He inspires us to ever lower levels of service.
As we labor and grow in the company of Christians, we do well to imitate those who founded the company. The apostles weren’t just a bunch of junior executives making decisions for others. They went into the field and cultivated new Christians. They sometimes ended up with dirtied hands and bloodied bodies. Several of the most prominent execs were killed on the job.
Thousands of Christians have retired, and we’re here to replace them. What service can we offer? Will it be driving Mr. Thomas to church every week? Will it be reading a preschooler the story of Josiah—743 times? Will it be cleaning the pews in the church? Will it be suffering scorn and mockery as we try to treat others with kindness? One thing is certain. To reach the top, you have to strive for the bottom.