The highlight of the Gospel over the past few weeks is service. This Sunday Gospel is not the exception. We hear this Sunday: “Whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all” (Matt. 20:26). John and James didn’t really know what they were asking when requested to sit at Jesus’ right and left in the Kingdom. The main purpose for asking to sit at the right and left of Jesus they were asking for privileges and honours. But the reality is different, as our Lord explains: To share in God’s glory, we must be willing to share Jesus’ self-giving service to others without counting the cost or seeking his own glory.
Many are familiar with Jesus’ call to become a servant to all. Upon observing my mother every day on her morning routine, I observed that she dedicated her life to serving her children, as many mothers and fathers do today. The ministry of those closest to us is a constant reminder that there is no limit to how a person can be in the service of the Lord if it doesn’t matter who gets the credit. If we are after achieving personal glory we might be missing the point. It is God who must get all the credit for all the good that we do and for how far we have come in our lives.
Every Christian’s motivation to serve must be to constantly give glory and honour to God. The true greatness of a Christian is expressed in the way we serve our brothers and sisters freely. Our motivation to serve must be focused on the knowledge that we are God’s beloved sons and daughters. Not so much on the aspect of earning or becoming the centre of attention, or knowing we will receive a reward. Jesus teaches us that it must always be about our free self-giving to others and God.
Jesus came to serve and to give everything for our sake. He is the paradigm we are to follow for he shows us that there is greatness in service. “When you are in the service of your fellow beings you are in the service of God.” Anonymous