Slavery, Sacrifice, and Kingdom leadership.

Tuesday & Wednesday had a common theme of discussion. It is Slavery. Not the American institution but its spiritual nature and being called to slavery. Jesus took on the form of man and humbled himself to the nature of a slave and then faced death on a cross. He was the greatest that he spoke about when he told his disciples that if they wanted to be great they must become slaves of all. Paul said that our attitude was to be the same as that of Jesus when he humbled himself to death (and from the throne of heaven).
Jesus, in the only act that he actually institutionalized, wrapped himself in a towel and bowed at the feet of his followers and served them in the very manner of a slave. He told them that they are right to call him teacher and lord and that this is what that looks like. He told them that they must do likewise for each other.
At home church we read 2 peter 1 and peter opens this epistle by introducing himself as Simon Peter a slave and apostle of Jesus. This is the most humble posture we see in peter throughout scripture and it is his later contribution as well. Maturity and growth look a lot like shrinking and moving down or toward the cross (which is a sign of death).
I pierced my ear after that bible study as a sign of my willful surrender to Jesus as a bond-servant or slave. This is how servants pledged themselves to good masters in the Old Testament, they would hammer an awl through there ear into the doorpost. They tagged themselves as his for life. Granted i used a safety pin and a potato but my conviction is the same. Jesus is the only lord of my life and i surrender everything to his will and the kingdom he spent his entire life proclaiming. The end of 2 peter 1 says that we have been given a prophetic message and i will cling to this message as a light in the darkness as the sun rises in my heart and the dark, cold, lonely shores of my life feel the warmth, light, and fellowship of his kingdom coming.
Real authority and leadership grow out of sacrifice and surrender. When we lose our life we find it. Our ambition should be communal and include the least in our world. It is His kingdom that we are praying to come and it is His will that we are to do. Surrender is imperative and sacrifice inevitable if we walk in the footsteps of the god who was crucified.