Once upon a time in a world much like our own, lived a man who had only one ambition.
He wanted to be king.
It didn’t matter to him which nation he ruled; he just wanted to be king. As far back as he could remember, he wanted to be king.
Each night before he went to bed he’d brush his teeth, floss, and stare in the mirror for five minutes repeating his narcissistic mantra.
“I will be king, for I was created to be king. I will rule over others for that’s why I was born. It is my destiny, it is my rightful place in this world. King Mamba Carob. Yes, I was made to be king.”
Mamba was an only child; the son of a man with an explosive temper, and a woman who lived to please her man; whichever one she had at the time. Yes, he was merely a child when the idea of becoming a king began to consume him. And watching his mother interact with her “men” helped shape Mamba’s worldview; become king, gain servants, keep people under your thumb and never have to answer to a soul.
His mother wasn’t exactly what you would call beautiful. Poor thing. She was however quite intelligent, except where it came to men.
As for the men in her life, if you’d line up ten of them, with all but one having great jobs, wonderful people skills, plenty of savings in the bank, and faith in God, and tell her to pick one of the men to date; she’d pick the one loser in the bunch. That’s just how she was.
As Mamba’s mother bounced from man to man, from one abusive relationship to another, Mamba saw his mother sign up for one government program after another. She called it surviving; he saw it as his due. She was thankful for the help. He believed he deserved more.
After all, why should so many have so much when he had so little.
Oh, but that would change. Yes, indeed.
All through the years of his youth, and on into his young adult days, Mamba kept his dream, his destiny, alive and thriving. Nothing and no one mattered as much as his kingdom. His very own kingdom.
It didn’t matter what he had to do, who he must walk on, or whether he needed to fabricate a lie just to get past a particular line of questioning; he was ready for the task. Conscience? A luxury he couldn’t afford to have if he was to be king.
And he WAS going to be king!
“A king can’t afford to be close to anyone”, was one of his favorite phrases.
Nothing meant more to him than the kingdom; Mamba’s kingdom. And he had learned “kingdom philosophy” from some of the best teachers in the land. His parents.
The dads lived for their own pleasure. His mom behaved like a groveling sycophant who was afraid of her own shadow. Be the king of your own life, your own little domain. Control how others think and behave. Don’t be answerable to anyone but yourself.
And he came so close. So, so close.
But he never made it. You see, there can be only one king. Only one. And no matter how much you want it, or how many people you trample into the ground while attempting to secure your own kingdom, it simply won’t work.
Oh, sure, you can rule your little world and force everyone around you to bow before you three times a day. You can succeed in fooling everyone into believing you are something wonderful and grand. But there’s someone who knows who you really are; your fears, your flaws, and your foolish beliefs about your self importance.
No matter how big you are, there’s someone bigger.
Regardless of your intelligence, there’s always a person who is smarter.
And you may be the richest, best dressed, most powerful person in your world; most generally, that’s how we all like to see ourselves.
You may have had a better childhood than Mamba, or you may have had to fight and scratch, beg borrow and steal for every little worldly treasure. Some may believe you have the bull by the horns and are sitting in the catbird seat.
But there’ll always be someone you must answer to.
So why not start now?
Yield to the only one who has the right to be king. King Jesus.
“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
“Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:5-11 ESV)