Two campaign slogans have stood out to me:
- Slogan #1: “E vetmja rrugë për Tiranën, e vetmja rrugë për Shqipërinë.” Translation:
“The only way for Tirana, the only way for Albania.”
- Slogan #2: “Ju jeni të parët. Tirana është e para.” Translation:
“You are first. Tirana is first.”
Very bold declarations, don’t you think? Especially claiming to be “the only way” for Tirana.
And, it is a rare event in Albania to see Slogan #2 put into action. (“You are first, Tirana is first”).
In fact, if you ask most Albanians, they’d readily agree that politicians seem to have only one thing in mind—personal advancement resulting in material gain.
As Christians around the world reflect on the meaning of Easter this week, I too, remember the One who did not paint the city with gutsy campaign slogans or empty promises, but who demonstrated what it truly means to lead by serving and to love by sacrificing.
Jesus claimed in John 14:6, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
Those are radical words. Even for Jesus. Many people today balk at that statement.
Yet Jesus bodily and painfully demonstrated that He put:
and the whole world
when He died on the cross in our place,
taking our sins upon Himself,
experiencing the worst kind of death,
so that we could fellowship with the Father
and experience eternal life.
The Apostle Paul describes this radical kind of ‘putting others first’ in Philippians 2:3-8:
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!”
It wasn’t just a slogan for Jesus.
He embodied true humility, servanthood, unconditional love, & sacrifice. In doing so, Jesus became the only Way, the only Hope for our broken cities and our sin-marred lives.