“James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ” James 1:1
This is how James starts off his letter to the church. He introduces himself as a servant. James would have been one of the leading figures in the church, a well respected pastor, the brother of Jesus and with enough of a reputation to only need a single name. But the only title he uses is “servant”.
There is an immediate challenge for us. Are we striving after positions, titles and acclaim, or are we content to be known as servants?
Often once people get up the ranks at work or in church they can start to think that certain things are beneath them. And certainly in a work context you wouldn’t expect to see the CEO cleaning toilets. But when it comes to church no matter what our position is we are all servants of God. No kingdom advancing task should be beneath us no matter our position.
James takes great contentment in his reputation being that he is first and foremost a servant, serving God and Jesus. He is not interested in building his own name, but in serving God and giving glory to Jesus.Often we want people to know all the things we have achieved, all the accomplishments we have to our name. But James reminds us the greatest position we can strive for is to be a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We are servants of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is important for us to remember that Jesus is our Lord. We gladly accept Him as our saviour, but sometimes we can be more reluctant to accept Him as Lord. It costs us nothing to have Jesus as our saviour. But it costs us everything to let Him be our Lord. We are not in charge anymore. We don’t call the shots. We are servants, Jesus is Lord. We must surrender to His lordship and let Him lead us in every aspect of life. We cannot keep a grip on the steering wheel of our life – it must all be handed over to Jesus, for as James reminds us, we are servants. All of our ambitions, dreams, aspirations, hopes, plans, expectations – they must all be surrendered over to Jesus. We must do it willingly, following the example of Jesus, who himself took the position of servant during His time on earth, and willingly humbled Himself on our behalf, so that through His death on the cross we are able to call Him not just Lord but also Saviour.