Looking for How to Be Great? A New Definition of Greatness

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They were looking for greatness, but in all the wrong places.

"James and John, Zebedee’s sons, came up to him. 'Teacher, we have something we want you to do for us.'

'What is it? I’ll see what I can do.'

'Arrange it,' they said, 'so that we will be awarded the highest places of honor in your glory—one of us at your right, the other at your left.'

Jesus said, 'You have no idea what you’re asking. Are you capable of drinking the cup I drink, of being baptized in the baptism I’m about to be plunged into?'

'Sure,' they said. 'Why not?'

Jesus said, 'Come to think of it, you will drink the cup I drink, and be baptized in my baptism. But as to awarding places of honor, that’s not my business. There are other arrangements for that.'

When the other ten heard of this conversation, they lost their tempers with James and John. Jesus got them together to settle things down. 'You’ve observed how godless rulers throw their weight around,' he said, 'and when people get a little power how quickly it goes to their heads. It’s not going to be that way with you.

Whoever wants to be great must become a servant. Whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave. That is what the Son of Man has done: He came to serve, not to be served—and then to give away his life in exchange for many who are held hostage.'”
--Mark 10:35-45 (MSG)


"If you want to be important—wonderful. If you want to be recognized—wonderful. If you want to be great—wonderful. But recognize that he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.

That's a new definition of greatness. By giving that definition of greatness, it means that everybody can be great, because everybody can serve.

You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve. You don't have to know about Plato and Aristotle to serve. You don't have to know Einstein's theory of relativity to serve. You don't have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve.

You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love. And you can be that servant.”
--Martin Luther King, Jr.


The Message (MSG) Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson


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That reminds me of the first summer I worked in my Uncle's Restaurant back in 1982. I started as a dishwasher and had to work my way up to prep cook, then line cook, then busboy then waiter, then back in the kitchen as Sous Chef.
He told me my first day that I needed to learn every job from bottom to top, otherwise, I am just temporary help.


Yes, whatever task is given us, do it with extraordinary love and excellence.