July 20


"The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many" (Matthew 20:28, NKJV).

Christ's startling declaration that He came to serve and not to be served was a shocking reversal of the popular opinion concerning leadership. This new philosophy jolted His disciples into a new way of thinking.

To the disciples, that new idea took all the prestige and authority out of being the chief. In this new approach to leadership, Christ took the initiative by His voluntary condescension to become one with the human race; by willingly wearing the apron of humility (see 1 Peter 5:5, 6); and finally by submitting to the most humiliating death on a cross. From the cradle to the grave He served others.

Jesus never succumbed to the celebrity syndrome. James B. Irwin, one of the Apollo 15 crew members who made the successful moon walk in 1971, captured Christ's servant-leadership mentality. On his way from the moon, en route to the earth, the temptation to see himself as a "superstar" and an international celebrity occurred to him. It was then that the thought struck him that he was really a servant and not a celebrity. He reflected, "I am here as God's servant on Planet Earth to share what I have experienced so that others might know the glory of God." In our status-conscious, prestige-grabbing, power-seeking, superstar age, may we remember that we are called to serve. "Jesus, the served of all, came to be the servant of all. And because He ministered to all, He will again be served and honored by all. And those who would partake of His divine attributes, and share with Him the joy of seeing souls redeemed, must follow His example of unselfish ministry."--The Desire of Ages, p. 651.

My Prayer Today: Lord, remind me each day that You have called me to serve and not to be served. Deliver me, Lord, from the superstar mentality. Amen.