You can see all the lectionary readings for Proper 24, Year B by clicking here. I have chosen to discuss the passage from the Gospel of Mark.
The brothers James and John come o Jesus and ask him for a favor. They ask that when he is king they can sit at his right and his left in places of honor.
Jesus tells them they don’t understand what they are asking. He asks them if they can drink from the cup he will drink from or be baptized as he will be. Of course they respond enthusiastically (because they still don’t understand).
He tells them that they will indeed drink from the same cup and have the same baptism, but it is not for him to say who will sit by him because God has prepared those places.
The other disciples were angry at James and John for their lobbying tactics. Jesus called them together and explained that they would not function like the rest of the world and its rulers.
Whoever wants to be your leader must be your servant.Whoever wants to be first must serve the rest of you like a slave. Follow my example: Even the Son of Man did not come for people to serve him. He came to serve others and to give his life to save many people.
Mark 10:43-45 (Easy-to-Read Version)
Again Jesus is teaching us how to follow him, and it flips the script on society’s norms (the society of his time but also ours). Even a couple thousand years later, his words are revolutionary. Serve to lead; lead by serving. There’s no looking out for number one or grabbing all you can to get ahead. Live by love and live for others. How would it change your plans for today and the days to come if you lived by these words?