He called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?” –Mark 8:34-36
To pick up the cross and follow Jesus means to be willing to go anywhere and do anything for your Lord. It means that you want God to do His will in and through you. There is a cost to being a disciple of Jesus Christ, but the end results are well worth it.
I recently heard of a business executive who said, “I spent my entire life climbing the corporate ladder only to find when I got to the top that my ladder was leaning against the wrong building. I have wasted my life with trivia.” Are you passionately pursuing Christ? Don’t waste your life in a trivial pursuit when you have at your fingertips, the Lord of life to guide you into greater depths and a more meaningful lifestyle.
To be a disciple of Jesus means to pursue Him like the pursuit of a lover and the passion of a romance. Christ is worth your every thought and breath. In Him you will find your reason for living. Remember that He gives you His Spirit but wants you to give Him your body, mind, and soul.
1. Reread Mark 8:34-36. What does it mean for you to deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Jesus?
2. What will it cost you to truly be a disciple of Jesus? Are you willing to pay this price?
Matthew 10:38; Luke 14:27