In Matthew 20:26, Jesus teaches to His disciples “…whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant.” Notice, He didn’t say “whoever wishes to be nice, be a servant.” According to Christ, servant hood is not a sign of weakness; paradoxically, it is a way to greatness.
God created us to serve, and through service we discover real joy and fulfillment. However, we are called to true servanthood, which is very different from our world’s view of “service.”
Consider the differences between true Christ-modeled service and worldly service listed below and extracted from Philippians 2:
By contrast, the humble servant, like Christ, does not fear serving those above or below him. He serves as a lifestyle at work, at home, in the community, anywhere, and anytime.
Why? Because his heart has nurtured humility. He has learned that whatever power, influence, or ability he possesses is a gift from God. He is secure in God’s love and acceptance of him, so he has nothing to prove and no one to impress. He finds joy in giving his best away in service. His goal is to glorify God, and he knows God will exalt him in due time if He so desires. He views service as an opportunity to use his God-given strengths for others.
So does it work? Check out this evidence that servanthood and humility can be synonymous with greatness.
In his landmark book Good to Great, Jim Collins reports the surprise he felt when the research on top executives of great companies came in:
We were surprised, shocked really, to discover the type of leadership required for turning a good company into a great one. Compared to high-profile leaders with big personalities who make headlines and become celebrities, the good-to-great leaders seem to have come from Mars. Self-effacing, quiet, reserved, even shy – these leaders are a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will.”
Find one new way to serve someone this week, not like the world teaches us to serve, but true Christ-like service.