A Beautiful Thing - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas 
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Hillcrest Baptist Church

Day 5 Devotional (Week 4)
Friday, May 6, 2011

"Jesus called them together and said, 'You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.  Not so with you.  Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.  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.'" -- Mark 10:42-45 (NIV)

James and John had just asked Jesus for higher positions in His Kingdom.  Jesus didn't grant their request, and His response to them was that true greatness will not come from being served, but by serving others.  In today's world, personal achievement is how you get to the top.  This is not the same for Christ's kingdom.  Your service to God is much more important than personal achievement.

Jesus was the Son of God, and even he didn't come to be served.  He came to serve.  We can learn from His example.  Jesus wants us to not focus on our needs, but on the needs of others around us.  Galatians 5:13 says, "You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free.  But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love" (NIV).  We should strive to love and serve God and others around us every day.

Jesus came to this earth to teach and spread God's word.  But he also had another purpose here.  Jesus paid the price for our sins.  He gave His life as a ransom for us.  He covered a debt that we would have never been able to pay.  And because of this, we can have eternal life in Heaven.

Jesus didn't grant James' and John's request.  God doesn't grant all of our requests either.  Sometimes we are in the same boat as James and John -- something we think will be better for us might not actually be the best for us.  God always has this in mind with our request.

Dear Heavenly Father, please help me to focus on the needs of others around me, not just myself.  Help me to be a servant to you and others.  Thank you for your Son, Jesus, and for the ransom He paid for us.  Amen.

Prepared by Nikki Cameron

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