"UP THE DOWN STAIRCASE" IS NOT A 1960s MOVIE: IT IS NORMAL CHRISTIAN DISCIPLESHIP!
"The Way Up is Down"
Guest Blogger Alan P, Posted December 11th, 2009
Originally posted at: http://www.godismysource.org/blog/2009/the-way-up-is-down
Used by permission.
Reader’s Note: This borrowed reading captures the essence of why the invertedchristian.com web blog exists.
Often, we want something better in our lives: a better job or a better position in our company or ministry. Or maybe our desire is to live in a better house or in a different neighborhood or to have more responsibility or greater financial resources. But opportunities for such advances seem to slip away from us. We seem to be stuck in our current circumstances. What can we do to change our them? We can look to God who is our source of advancement.
In the kingdom of God, we do not have to be concerned about how high we can raise ourselves through our own efforts. Rather it is about how low are we willing to go in service to Christ. Jesus told his disciples:
You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. It shall not be so among you, but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. Whoever desires to be first among you shall be your bond servant, even as the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. Matthew 20:25-27
If we want to attain or accomplish more in our lives, then we have to be ready to abandon those things which we think we deserve and focus on how we can serve others. This was the example that Jesus set when he came to earth as a man. Paul explains in Philippians 2:5-9:
Have this in your mind, which was also in Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, didn’t consider it robbery to be equal with God, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, yes, the death of the cross. Therefore, God also highly exalted him, and gave to him the name which is above every name.
Some might see Jesus’ acceptance of his assignment to come to earth to redeem humanity as a demotion. But Jesus understood that the way up was down. If he came down to man’s level then suffered and overcame sin and its penalty then he could raise mankind up and restore the relationship that had been broken between God and man. And as a result of going through death on the cross God, the scripture says, highly exalted Jesus.
We have to apply the same truth to our lives. Pride would have us resist humbling ourselves to doing tasks that may seem beneath us. But that is what we have to do as Peter advises:
The act of taking a lower position and serving others is what attracts God’s attention. God is not as interested in our status, position or ego as much as he is interested in seeing us imitate his nature, to show his compassion and mercy. And it is when we demonstrate God’s nature that he gets glorified. Then God’s favor comes to us as a result of our obedience.
Thus, if you are dreaming about moving up in your life, remember that the way up is down. Opportunities to do what others refuse to do will be coming into your life. These are your opportunities for advancement. Accept them as God given challenges; challenges that will result in God’s favor being released in your life.