I just love a good ole relatable Bible story, don't you?? I came across this little nugget when I was reading in Matthew.
When the other disciples heard what James and John had asked, they were indignant. But Jesus called them together and said, You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.
Matthew 20:24-28 (emphasis mine)
To give you a little more context, James and John's mom had asked Jesus if her two sons could be seated on his right and left in the Kingdom, in places of honor. Talk about the ULTIMATE Mama's Boys. But, when the disciples found out, they were like REALLLLY? *Kevin Hart Voice*
I read the word 'indignant' and chuckled. Like, can you imagine being in the presence of Jesus and being indignant? Or offended? Or like, ummm excuse me sir/hello/duh/do you see dis? Like here they are hanging with Perfection - with God Himself - and they have the nerve to give Jesus some lip?!
And then I realized I have definitely had that same nerve too. More often than I'd like to admit. Those times where I've looked at what God's blessed someone else with and held out my hands like, "uhhh excuse me, what about me?" Or, those times where I've kept a tally on all my good deeds trying to build up a Kingdom Credit Line and then demanding it be cashed in. Yeah, that nerve. I've definitely had my fair share of indignant moments before the Lord.
But, Jesus' response to the disciples and His response to me is always one of compassion and humility. After all, He is the King of the Classy Clapback. He divulges the true definition of leadership: SERVICE. He states, "whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant; For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many." (v. 26, 28) Everything Jesus says ALWAYS points back to Him. He's not going to tell us to do something that He hasn't already done. The Son of Man came to serve us once and for all, that we might be empowered to serve those around us graciously and tirelessly.
The Bible doesn't tell us the rest of their conversation after that, but I bet that in that moment, their indignation cooled and their hearts softened as they smiled sheepishly amongst each other. I bet they remembered all of the moments they saw Jesus serve the people as well as them. And, I bet that's when the light bulb clicked and a new anointing of leadership was released in their lives.
I challenge you this week to find someone you can serve and watch your life and your leadership be transformed.
P.S. I'd love to connect with you in the comments! Find me on social media!