November 12, 2015

Upside Down Leadership

Written by Tripp Prince

Upside Down Leadership  11.12

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – November 12, 2015

Guest Writer: Meet my son-in-law Tripp Prince. We are blessed to have him as our guest writer.

And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:42-45

Of all the things Jesus taught his disciples, the way of humility was one of the hardest for them to grasp. His disciples thought they were following a revolutionary: someone who would overthrow the Romans and help God’s chosen people regain their rightful place in the world. This is why these words from Jesus in Mark 10 immediately follow a request from James and John to sit at Jesus’ right and left hand when he conquers and begins his reign. What then is all this business about coming not to be served but to serve?

Though they couldn’t see it at the time, Jesus’ approach to leadership was in fact, deeply revolutionary.

When we look at Jesus, we see that true glory is only found through humility. That strength is found in weakness. Good Friday must precede Easter Sunday. This is the upside down nature of God’s kingdom, and the invitation of the gospel is for us to reframe our lives in light of this value system.

Jesus is fully aware of the radical nature of servant leadership. He knows it stands in direct opposition to the way people “make it” in this world. Yet he is also fully aware of the destruction that comes from inflated egos and leadership power plays. He knows that when we enter the rat race and fight our way up the corporate ladder, we will eventually find ourselves bitter, broken, and burnt out.

Because Jesus loves us deeply, he says to his followers, “It shall not be so among you!” When he says this, Jesus redefines what it means to be a leader. In God’s kingdom, a leader doesn’t have to have the corner office. A leader isn’t someone with power over employees or an agenda to push. No, in God’s kingdom, a true leader is the person who has the courage to walk the way of humility. A servant leader sees their brokenness and weakness, not as a source of shame or embarrassment, but as a way to point beyond themselves to the one who came, “not to be served but to serve, and give his life as a ransom for many.”

For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. Luke 14:11

Prayer: Father, give us hearts of servants that look to Jesus and in him learn the upside down nature of your kingdom.

Application: In order to foster a life of humility and servant leadership, how can you go out of your way to serve someone else this week?

Related Readings: Proverbs 15:33; Matthew 16:24; Philippians 2:3; Colossians 3:12

Post/Tweet this today: The invitation of the gospel is for us to reframe our lives in light of God’s value system. #upsidedownleadership #WisdomHunters

Worship Resource: 14 minute video- Bethel: Your Grace is Enough

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