King or Servant

October 12th, 2019

RG AUDIO 101219


James 3:9-18

We used to play a game on the elementary playground called “King of the Mountain.” You could play it anywhere there was something to climb, but on our playground, the poor piece of equipment that was subjected to our violent climbing was dubbed, “The Turtle.” It was a large, hard plastic sort of equipment shaped like a turtle (they don’t make playgrounds like they used to!).

The rules of the game were simple enough: get to the top and stay there—whatever the cost. When we hit the playground, we’d run for the turtle and start climbing. There was pushing, shoving, pulling, several elbows, and lots of shouting. Before long, kids were having their faces stepped on and running to the teachers with injuries.

It was chaos.

James says this is what life is like when we let selfish ambition and envy get a foothold in our lives, churches, and communities. Any time we hit the ground looking to get ahead of someone else at any cost, disorder is right behind.

Of course, Jesus taught a different way altogether. He says, “Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant . . .” (Matthew 20:26).

Author: Erik Gernand


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