Journal Luke 22:1-38 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “A dispute also arose among them, as to which of them was to be regarded as the greatest.
And he said to them: “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those in authority over them are call ‘benefactors.’ But not so with you.
Rather, let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. For who is the greater: One who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves…” Luke 22:24-27
Observation: In the midst of the celebration of Passover and the preparation of the Cross, the disciples revert to the old argument of “who is better?”
Analysis: Not a new argument around the guys. Remember that embarrassing story of the Zebedee brother’s mom? “Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came up to (Jesus) with her sons and kneeling before him she asked him for something. And (Jesus) said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Say that these two sons of mine are to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left in your kingdom.” (Matt 20:20-21)
I would have been soooo embarrassed—except it appears the brothers were in full agreement. (c. Mark 10:37)
So, here they all are, in the upper room, having 1st communion, and the conversation goes to: “I’m better.” “No, I am first.” “I should be considered leader”, and more. So, somebody was bold enough to try to settle the issue and ask, “Jesus, whom do you consider your Number 1?”
Jesus settles the question by describing the Gentiles: “Gentiles appoint and exercise themselves in leadership positions and call themselves “benefactors.” And then he says, “But look at me. My example is servanthood, being a servant.” I remember he made a point of washing the disciple’s feet, the epitome of visualizing the servant leader.
I fail in this often. Ambition and humility collide in my heart. It is so in every person.
Prayer: Lord, I continue to fall at the foot of the Cross concerning ambition and humility. I treasure holy ambition, but don’t know when to exert myself to pursue. I have decided to rest in you and any calling you may have for me. Until (and if) then, I serve—shakenly, with warring conflict, but pursuing You all my days.