the very last


the southern baptist convention is meeting this week. this means the largest protestant denomination in the u.s., which i am a part, is coming together to make decisions about how it does things. invariably there will be a great deal of news concerning the election of the first african-american SBC president. as well there should be since the SBC’s start was racially based. i personally am very glad we have come full circle.

yet, this is not what i want to post about.

nope, i want to post about mark 9:33-37 where JESUS talks about whoever wants to be the greatest. HE says whoever wants to be first must be the very last, the servant of all. such servanthood is the defining characteristic of the leadership JESUS wants in those who follow HIM. there are a lot of important people in the spotlight of the southern baptist convention’s annual meeting. i wonder how many of the people on the stage this week are usually putting themselves “very last.”

i have been around some pastors who were (and still are) amazing servants. bill pruitt, one of the pastors i worked with in baton rouge at parkview, is one such servant. i went with him to a louisiana baptist convention executive board meeting once and discovered that he had developed the habit of clearing all the lunch trays for everyone. frank morrow, the pastor i worked with in covington, texas, was the same way. they are many others i could mention who live a life of leadership by being the servant of everyone else. i hope i lead from being the last rather than always trying to be first.

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