Monday, July 28, 2008

Power...

I'm walking through life, minding my own business, and someone throws me for a loop. I don't recall who it was, but someone I was talking with or listening to recently opened my eyes to the full meaning of a familiar passage.

The passage in question was Matthew 20:25-28.

"Jesus called them together and said, 'You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave — just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." (NIV)

I've read those words dozens of times. They're among those I've got memorized, or nearly so. Still, I wasn't ready for this statement concerning them: "Jesus is telling us that power has no place in the life of a Christian."

Looking at Jesus' words now, I see it. I don't understand how I missed it before. There's to be NO lording it over others. There's only to be serving in the life of a believer.

Is that the way things are in the church? Unfortunately not. There are power plays. There is manipulation. There's all kinds of human effort and energy exerted in an effort to gain the upper hand.

God forgive us. God forgive me. I've played the control game a few times. Make me a servant. Make my brothers and sisters servants.

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