22 Jesus said to his disciples, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”
Take Up Your Cross and Follow Jesus
23 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25 For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?Luke 9:22-25
In the western church we talk alot about grace and we are called to be a people of grace. Grace is this beautiful gift that is given to us. It’s free and it requires nothing of me. Christ did all the work at the cross that would need to be done for my salvation. I just have to receive that. This grace allows us to become heirs of the Kingdom.
Yet here we see something else, a parallel of sorts, where Jesus says, I must suffer and if you want to follow me here is how you do that: deny yourself and carry your cross daily.
So it seems that heirs in the kingdom have responsibilities. We must lay down our lives also.
This responsibility is like the way we receive discipleship from Christ. We lay down our own lives – so that our lives do not become our god. It’s really easy in this life to have our whole world revolve around our thoughts, projects, wants, and desires. But this life of disipleship is a life of total shift in the way we look our life.
I can’t imagine what that must have been like to hear this from the viewpoint of His disciples. To them the cross was a gruesome death. We see the cross and think, as Christians, freedom. They saw torturous death. Yet, he asks it off them.
Crucify all that puts you at the center of our own life. Glorify Him instead.
Jesus, forgive me for all the ways I take control of my own life. I am your disciple. I work, move, go, and do on your behalf. Help me, today, to stop doing whatever I think is right and rather ask You before I move. Show me, today, what kinds of situations cause me to fear and grab the reins of the day. I declare that I trust You today. In Jesus Name. Amen
All is grace,