Day 23 - Pick up your cross and Follow Him

Matthew 16:24-26

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. 25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. 26 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?
 

Thought

 
As we prepare to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection on Easter Sunday, let us take one more opportunity today to reflect on the cost of following Jesus. A re-commitment to pursue Jesus and to live as He is calling you to live could be the most constructive thing that you do across this entire season.

One of the opportunities within this season of lockdown has been to consider our own ways; to be shaken from our normal routines and our potential complacency in faith and forced to reckon with the question: Am I actually following Jesus? If the corona virus is enough to shake your faith, may I be bold enough to suggest that maybe your faith was in the wrong thing all along.

Jesus willingly humbled himself, with all of his divinity, to death on a cross. He laid aside his heavenly privileges, did not demand the rights he was entitled to, and gave up his life so that we could be forgiven, set free and redeemed. It’s the most radical message of good news of all time.

Our challenge, as Christians, is to reflect that same attitude. We are called to give our lives for this cause – to sacrifice our own luxuries, rights and privileges to help a lost and broken world. Sometimes we will suffer. Sometimes it will be inconvenient. Sometimes it will hurt. But we have a hope that is an anchor for our soul. We are children in God’s kingdom, and eternity awaits. God’s unchanging character provides the unshakable object of our faith that will carry us through any trial. How can you step up today and live the purpose-filled life God is calling you to live?
 

Action

 
We need the Holy Spirit’s help to live the way of Christ. Today, pray the simplest of prayers if you are up for taking your walk with God deeper than ever before: Jesus, help me.

We cannot live this Christian life alone. The sacrifices and costs required of Jesus’ followers are to be undertaken in the contexts of a hope-filled community: The church. It is our home of encouragement and accountability. Identify one Christian relationship that you would like to invest into more often. Schedule in a call with that person.