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The Servant Leader

24When the ten heard it, they were angry with the two brothers. 25But Jesus called them to him and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them.26It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, 27and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; 28just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:24-28, NRSV)

If you want to be great in the kingdom of God you must be a servant of all. Even those who would betray you. You see Jesus gave us an example of this when he washed the feet of the disciples and included in those whose feet he washed was Judas, the one wh ok handed him over.

So to do what God has called us to do we must love everyone and serve those whom we are with.

Be like Jesus and give as God gave to you.

 

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All is Possible with God

23Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” 25When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astounded and said, “Then who can be saved?” 26But Jesus looked at them and said, “For mortals it is impossible, but for God all things are possible.” 27Then Peter said in reply, “Look, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” 28Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man is seated on the throne of his glory, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life. 30But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first. (Matthew 19:23-30, NRSV)

The first will be last and the last will be first.

Makes me wonder what Peter thought he was going to get by following Jesus?

Do we follow Jesus for what we will be getting when He returns to judge the world? Is eternal life a prize we wait on or a life we enjoy now?

Don’t get me wrong, the benefits to come of life with God forever is great but eternal life is something I’m living now. Walking with Jesus everyday.

We should feel His presence with us all the time and know that is something to share with the world.

 

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Commandments for Life

12Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. 13You shall not murder.14You shall not commit adultery. 15You shall not steal. 16You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. (Exodus 20:12-16, NRSV)

Honor your father and mother is the only commandment in the 10 commandments that comes with a promise. If you honor your father and mother you will have a long life. Maybe this is because of the other commandments that say if your children disobey you you should take them outside the city and stone them to death!

Or maybe it is because you were a gift to your parents from God and by honoring them you are showing God honor and by following them you are showing God you can follow God.

And all of these commandments help us to love others and that is what God wants us to do. So honor and love.

 

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The Greatest in the Kingdom

At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2He called a child, whom he put among them, 3and said, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.4Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.6“If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea. 7Woe to the world because of stumbling blocks! Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, but woe to the one by whom the stumbling block comes! 8“If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away; it is better for you to enter life maimed or lame than to have two hands or two feet and to be thrown into the eternal fire. 9And if your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out and throw it away; it is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and to be thrown into the hell of fire. (Matthew 18:1-9, NRSV)

The greatest in the kingdom is the one who knows they can not do it on their own.

Really? Children know they can’t do it on their own? Obviously, you don’t have kids, because from about 2 on they are always saying, “I do it myself!”

But now really hear me out, it is because they have a faith that is not disturbed by a lot of questions. We as adults can’t understand something so it is obviously made up and not true, like the feeding of 5,000 men, plus women and children with 5 loaves and 2 fishes, or Jesus walking on water. But kids are just like, I don’t get it but that is really cool.

We have to accept things as they are and let Jesus lead us. That is how we succeed in life.

We need to just have faith, and know that seeing isn’t believing, believing is seeing!

And by giving up control and following Jesus is how we become great.

 

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The Transfiguration

24Then Jesus told his disciples, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 25For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it. 26For what will it profit them if they gain the whole world but forfeit their life? Or what will they give in return for their life? 27“For the Son of Man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay everyone for what has been done. 28Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and his brother John and led them up a high mountain, by themselves. 2And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became dazzling white. 3Suddenly there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. 4Then Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if you wish, I will make three dwellings here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” 5While he was still speaking, suddenly a bright cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud a voice said, “This is my Son, the Beloved; with him I am well pleased; listen to him!” 6When the disciples heard this, they fell to the ground and were overcome by fear. 7But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Get up and do not be afraid.” 8And when they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus himself alone. (Matthew 16:24-17:8, NRSV)

Peter had no idea what he was saying when he started talking. He was overcome with Jesus becoming dazzling white and then these two other men standing there, talking with Jesus. So Peter started babbling, have you ever done that?

Jesus was talking with Moses and Elijah, which how did Peter, James and John know who the two men were? I wonder what were they talking about. And then the voice comes that says who Jesus is.

Why did God show this to these three disciples? What would you have thought if you were one of the three? How would this have changed your life and outlook on things?

How can you still live that way, because He is present with you always?

 

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Living in the World

32“Everyone therefore who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven; 33but whoever denies me before others, I also will deny before my Father in heaven. 34“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; 36and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household. 37Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and whoever does not take up the cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it. 40“Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. 41Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; 42and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.” (Matthew 10:32-42, NRSV)

This is honestly one of the passages I struggle with. Why would God want us to be in opposition to our family?

Well God doesn’t want us in opposition to our families, but Jesus here is saying that we need to be ready to be in opposition to anyone. We need to make sure we put God first and that no one gets in the way of us following God. And at some point, we might see God leading us in a way that our family or our friends may not understand yet. And it is our duty to follow where God is leading us. We can not let relationships get in the way of us following after God.

 

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Teaching on Worrying

31Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ 32For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34“So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today. (Matthew 6:31-34, NRSV)

Every little thing is going to be alright!

You see God loves you and knows your needs. God will provide for your needs.

Worrying doesn’t help you live the life God has called you to. Worry kills you and takes away joy. So fill your life with God’s joy and live the life God has for you.

And rest in God’s love.

 
 

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