Mark 10:41-45 (ESV)
And when the ten heard it, they began to be indignant at James and John.  And Jesus called them to him and said to them, "You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them.  But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant,  and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all.  For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."
“And when the ten heard it, they began to be indignant at James and John.” Predictable response. The other ten really show that they wanted to ask the same thing. And why should you think you are better than us? Jesus has to rebuke them all.
Most of us aren’t any different. Inside we all want the glory. In fact we want it so bad, we might even try to be the slave of all. The paradoxes of Christianity abound. “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many… “ And this is just it. We read this and we want right away to go about doing good works and serving others, before we even take notice of what this might mean in its entirety. We’re willing to be the slave of all if it means we eventually attain glory. But are we willing to be served by Christ? Are we willing to let him serve us, and thereby receive all the glory? Are we willing to stop and listen to him, let him wash our feet? If we don’t first let him serve us, then we can serve no one. If he doesn’t wash our feet, then we have no part with him.
But it is humiliating to be served by one so great as Jesus. It’s humiliating to admit we need his help. It is humiliating to let him wash our feet. We would be the slave of all if it meant our glory. But can we put the glory aside? Jesus did. He didn’t do it for the glory, it was his long before he ever started on this course. He set it aside to serve you and I. He is the greatest, he is the first. He is so because he serves us, and being served, forgiven of our sins, loved despite our sin, he washes us and prepares us to serve and love others.