FIRST? LAST?

Mark 9:30-37 — The Message
Leaving there, they went through Galilee. He didn’t want anyone to know their whereabouts, for he wanted to teach his disciples. He told them, “The Son of Man is about to be betrayed to some people who want nothing to do with God. They will murder him. Three days after his murder, he will rise, alive.” They didn’t know what he was talking about, but were afraid to ask him about it. They came to Capernaum. When he was safe at home, he asked them, “What were you discussing on the road?” The silence was deafening—they had been arguing with one another over who among them was greatest. He sat down and summoned the Twelve. “So you want first place? Then take the last place. Be the servant of all.” He put a child in the middle of the room. Then, cradling the little one in his arms, he said, “Whoever embraces one of these children as I do embraces me, and far more than me—God who sent me.”

Pt Lobos 2003 #5

Last and First

First?

A little attitude adjustment here.
Jesus’ followers
thought of him as the
Captain of the football team,
the Big-Man-On-Campus,
The King of Kool,
and they wanted to inflate their
impoverished selves
by ranking themselves
according to the
length of the shadow
cast by Jesus.
Jesus would have none of it.
and we learn an important rule
for the Christian Life:
you want to be first,
then try and be the best last you can be.
WOW! Last? Last? Really?
How many
have played the namedropping game?
You know,
the one where you
aggrandize yourself by mentioning
someone you consider important
so your listeners
will think you’re important, too?
Or, as they seem to be doing here,
elbowing and shoving
for an ever higher position
in the pecking order.
Jesus suggests
that we have it all wrong.
The place of one who follows him
is dead last.
instead of competing
to be a leader of all,
be a servant of all.
Be the lowest of the low.
Find your best
status in Jesus’ circle
in the very worst
standing possible.
It seems Christians
get the highest
ranking
from the lowest
classification.
It’s all backwards,
but that’s Jesus for you,
making our lives into parables
about
the kingdom…

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