They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the road?” But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest. Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.” He took a little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.” Mark 9:33-37 (NIV)
You have this desire for greatness within you. You don’t want your life to be unwisely used or misspent. You don’t want your life to amount to nothing or accomplish little. You want to be able to look back over your life with no regrets. Have I read you right? Do I understand you well? Nothing is hidden from you. You know me better than I know myself. You know my words before I speak them. You know my thoughts before I think them. So, you will not try to deny that you have a desire to be great within you? No, I will not. You are a little uncomfortable with the thought of being great. You are a little worried that desiring to be great might be an improper desire. Did you notice that I did not condemn my disciples for wanting to be great? Yes, I noticed that. Did you notice that I helped define what true greatness is and looks like? Yes, I noticed that as well. That’s good.
Let me clear something up for you. Desiring greatness is not an improper desire. Where do you think that desire in you came from? It did not come from me of that I am certain. No, it did not. I placed that desire within you. Let me hear what kind of greatness you are hoping for? I want to know you intimately. I want to hear your voice. I want to live and walk in an ongoing dialogue of prayer with you. I want to love and follow and serve you with all my heart and mind and soul and strength. That would be great. I want to be used by you. I want to go and do what you ask of me. I want you to be able to accomplish your purposes and fulfill your plans in and through my life. I want to bear fruit for your kingdom and being glory to your name. I want to shine brightly for you in this world. I want people to be drawn to you because of what they see of you in and through my life. That would be great. One day I want to be able to look back over my life with you and hear you say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” I know that only you can make me faithful. I know that only you can make me fruitful. So, I want to come to full rely on you. That would be great. These are the desires of greatness that I have on my mind. These are the desires of greatness that I have in my heart. These are the prayers of my heart and mind. I want to be great for you. I will hear and answers these prayers of yours. Thank you, Lord.
Lord, I do have desires. I do have ambitions. It is my desire and ambition to know and love and follow and serve you. I am willing to be last of all. I am willing to give myself fully in service to you and to others. Help me to do great things with and for you. Amen
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