They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them; they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them what was to happen to him, saying, "See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles; they will mock him, and spit upon him, and flog him, and kill him; and after three days he will rise again."
James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to him and said to him, "Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you." And he said to them, "What is it you want me to do for you?" And they said to him, "Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory." But Jesus said to them, "You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?" They replied, "We are able." Then Jesus said to them, "The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared."
When the ten heard this, they began to be angry with James and John. So Jesus called them and said to them, "You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." Mark 10:32-45
I have spent a good deal of time on the road, both as a child in the back of my parents old Chryslers, and as an adult, doing my best to serve God and family. The company we keep on the road deepens our relationships and our commitments, and we find insight and meaning as we move beyond where we are comfortable. Being on the road, we are exposed. Being on a journey we have never arrived. We can get frightened and amazed, bored and overwhelmed on the road. But the adventure is always worth our time, and the people are often strangers who become family to us.
Jesus is on the road with his disciples. This is his final journey to Jerusalem with them. They are amazed and frightened, unbelieving of his predictions. They want security. James and John ask for secured seating arrangements. They are not theirs to have, and it upsets the other disciples. But the other disciples were all thinking the same things. Give us security, as we feel so afraid right now. Jesus invites them to think, not of security but of service. It is in that service, where we are free. In that slavery of love, we are raised up with him.
Today, I ask God to help me let go of my wishes for perfect security and trust the life we have on this journey of love. May we trust that we are cared for and guided, as we offer ourselves for the care of others today.