And He was saying to them all,
“ If anyone wishes to come after Me,
he must deny himself,
and take up his cross daily and follow Me.
Thoughts~ I failed one day last month. I internally whined and had a pity party for one. It didn’t last long; it never does. The Holy Spirit gently knocked on the door of my soul and says “times up, let’s move on.” I confessed to the Lord that I was being rather stubborn (again) and thanked Him for the gentle nudge. And I quickly ran to read His word, where I am always renewed and refreshed. Always.
The ERV says it like this: “Jesus continued to say to all of them, “Any of you who want to be my follower must stop thinking about yourself and what you want. You must be willing to carry the cross that is given to you every day for following me.” Often I will check out other versions of the Bible to help me to understand what it is that Jesus is saying to me. In this case, He is saying to quit thinking about ourselves and just follow Him. And whatever burden is given to us, we need to carry it without complaining.
Sometimes I get an echo like I did right after reading Luke 9. I picked up a lovely book called “My Heart for His Glory”, turned to the days devotion and here is what I read: “Spend some quiet moments rehearsing the “crosses” you are currently carrying in your life. Then thank Jesus that because His cross did not defeat Him, He is alive today to help you carry yours.” I call those echo's of God. What a sweet echo this was.
Action~ Think about what your own cross is. What burden do you carry day in and day out? Singleness? Finances? Broken relationships? Childlessness? I could go on and on with a long list since each of us carries burdens that are too heavy for us. Whatever it is, write it on a slip of paper and place it in your Bible at Luke 9:23. Each time you come to this it will remind you that you are carrying your cross in response to what Jesus asked us to do. No more pity parties. He will reward you for your faithfulness. And Jesus will help you carry those burdens!
Pray~ Lord, when I fail in my walk, I thank you with my whole heart for your reminder to just pick up my cross and follow you. Sometimes it gets so very heavy and I KNOW You are there to help me.
Trusting the Lord,