I’m in kind of a pickle. Or maybe more a philosophical and theological conundrum, if you don’t like vegetable metaphors.
I want to be popular. I want people to like me. I want people to find me interesting. I want to have hundreds of people to view my blog, take an interest in me, follow me on Google+, and thousands of followers on Twitter. I want people to look forward to hearing me speak, or eagerly waiting to see what I will write next. I want to be stopped in the street because people know who I am. I want to have my picture taken with people that think I’m cool. I want to be seen as a positive contributer to society. I want, I want.
For some of you, this is what you want too. You can empathize with me. And in all honesty, who doesn’t want it? Being popular would be great. Famous people have the most exciting lives. Why can’t I be like that? It is reasonable to think that what I have to say is important and people should listen when I speak. It is not a stretch to think that I could be the next Al Gore about whatever topic I care about. To be famous, to be popular, to have public favor and power, all these things and more are rattling around in my brain. I want.
And it makes sense to want these things. It makes sense that this is what I should strive for. The seem to be the mark of real success, to be the mark of importance and status. Right?
There is an ache in my heart, in my spirit if you will. A pain that says that this line of thinking isn’t a good thing. A prick inside of me that tells me that wanting to be famous, wanting to be popular, wanting to be followed by the electronic masses isn’t what I’m made for. That is kind of lifestyle is not healthy on a spiritual level.
Scripture says this in regards to my problem.
“…but whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; just as the Son of Man (Jesus Christ) did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:26-28 NIV)
Just as Jesus was a humble servant, so are we called to be a servant. That means that as a Christian, there will be times that I won’t get noticed at all. There will be times that I will be overlooked. Times that I’m not acknowledged. Times that my existence doesn’t matter to anyone. Because that isn’t what a servant is about.
Being a servant isn’t about being flashy. Being a servant isn’t about being noticed. There was a time in history when the mark of a good slave was this, your master never knew you existed. A good servant would do their job so well, so perfectly, that their master wouldn’t have realized that work was done, or that it ever needed to be done.
That is the job Christ calls us to, to be a servant just like He was. Not a life filled with vain glory, with popularity and glamor. Jesus calls us to a life of humility. It isn’t easy. And sometimes it is the very last thing that I want. But more than the popularity, I want to honor and be like my God. The question then is how?
How do you deal with the needy feeling of popularity?
How do you work towards being more of a servant every day?
Let me know in the comments.