Pastor preached a great sermon this morning on how to be great according to Christ. In Mark 10, the disciples James and John come to Christ and ask to sit on Christ's right and left in his kingdom.
From birth, our desire is to be great, to be noticed or to be first. I see this in our boys. They always want to be served first, have the most of something or to get the last word. If I am focused on one, the others will vie for my attention.
Unfortunately, I see those same qualities in myself. I want to be first, best and greatest, too. I want the last word. I want to do what I want to do, when I want to do it, not when someone else says so. I hate it when someone interrupts what I am doing. Christ would have it otherwise. Dying to myself, denying my desire to be great, becoming a slave to others is how Christ expects me to live.
I've been struggling with my feelings. I expected to be doing other things at this time in my life. I had my children when I was very young, raised them and expected them to lead their own lives so I could do things I had never been able to do. But, one son cannot handle his life, so we are raising his three children instead.
This is not where I thought we would be. And yet, it must be where God wants us to be, because only by his will do we have custody of the boys. Things sailed through court in a way that no one expected. That had to have been God.
A friend once told me that most anger stems from blocked goals. Meaning that some people who don't get what and where they want, become angry. Between blocked goals and hormones, I seem to get pretty angry. However, I cannot take that out on the little boys. They are the innocents in this. When we see them do things that come from the lack of parenting in their lives, we get angry. When they do things that copy the things that they saw in their family, we get angry. When they just act like little boys, we get angry. We want them to be great. It's a real struggle.
So, Pastor hit it on the head when he said we must die to ourselves and serve others. Christ died serving us and the least we can do is to do the same. Does that mean I will be a perfect servant now? No, but it means that I will try to do better, listening to Him and letting Christ live through me, because I can't do it alone.
Mark 10:43-45: "...Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."