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.” –Mark 8:34
I read of a man who bought a hotel in Spokane, Washington. There was only one problem: The hotel’s restaurant was the big moneymaker, since the bar grossed 10,000 dollars a month. But the new owner wasn’t going to keep the bar. It’s not that he wanted to impose his own views on other people, but as a Christian he chose not to run a business subsidized by alcohol sales. The hotel manager argued with the new owner that if guests couldn’t drink they would be out the door to a competitor. He also gave the new owner some convincing statistics showing that he couldn’t make it financially without the bar. The owner listened politely and closed the door to the bar. He had to stick to his convictions. That manager promptly quit.
The owner remodeled the hotel lobby and turned the bar into a cozy coffee shop. In the first couple of years of business, food sales went up 20 percent and room bookings were up 30 percent. Still, profits weren’t what they could be if the bar were open. But the hotel owner’s reply was, “Beliefs aren’t worth much if a fella’s not ready to live by them!”
1. What risks are you willing to take to follow your beliefs?
2. Are you willing to deny yourself in order to follow the call of Jesus? Don’t let anyone kid you there is a sense of self-denial when you get serious about getting in touch with God.
Matthew 10:38, Luke 14:27