THURSDAY, JANUARY 30
“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”
Mark 10:45 (ESV)
SERVING OTHERS WILL NEVER BE CONVENIENT; BUT IT’S WORTH IT
In June 1999 American flight 1420 crashed on landing in Little Rock, Arkansas. Among the 145 passengers were 25 students from Ouachita Baptist University who had been on concert tour. When the plane crash landed, it split in two allowing many to escape quickly. The plane also immediately caught fire. Tragically, but gratefully only 9 persons died. One was an Ouachita student named James Harrison. A strapping 21 year-old saxophonist, student, and part-time music minister from Paragould, Arkansas, James never left the plane. He had been seated in the right rear and joined a line of people moving to the exits. Then he stepped aside. Witnesses say they saw and heard him helping others, including a burn victim, to get out first. Everyone assumed he finally also had left. Only later was he discovered missing. He apparently was overcome by smoke and perished. He always was known for helping others, said Allison Hunt, his singing partner for two years. “He gave up his life so that others might live.” (World, 6-19-99, p. 37).
Jesus paid the ultimate price and gave up His life for our sins. That wasn’t easy or convenient but it was worth it. Mark writes that Jesus gave His life as a ransom. Ransom was a payment to set someone free. The price was worth it in God’s mind.
In Mark 10:45 we have the key to the whole book of Mark. The key to Mark is servanthood and sacrifice. C.J. Mahaney says it so well in his book Humility: True Greatness, “Ultimately our Christian service exists only to draw attention to this source – to our crucified and risen Lord who gave Himself as the ransom for us all.” God desires to use our sacrifice and service to point others to Him and the price He paid to set us free from sin. Do you believe following God has you in any inconvenient situations currently? Do you feel like God is asking you to be unformatable to serve Him in any way? What difference does it make knowing that your sacrifice may lead someone else to Christ?