“If anyone intends to come after Me, let him deny himself(forget, ignore, disown, and lose sight of himself and his own interests) take up his cross, and (joining Me as a disciple and siding with My party) follow with Me (continually, cleaving steadfastly to Me.” Mark 8:34 AMP
Most want an easy gospel that requires nothing from us at all except a little nod to God occasionally. But God’s calling us to deny ourselves – our passions, our selfishness, and our dreams – take up the cross, and follow Him.
Jesus is not a politician looking for your vote! Neither is He a Santa Claus in the sky to grant your every wish. He’s not a ticket to be pulled from your pocket on Judgment Day so that you can escape the fires of hell. He’s God!
He’s either your Lord, or He’s not. He is either your King, or He’s not. He’s either your boss — or not. He’s your Friend, or your foe. He’s your Savior, or your Judge. He’s either your Father, or you have another one.
Make the choice today to be willing to deny yourself — because when you do give up all your “stuff” and lay it at His feet, following Him, you’ll find the most amazing life awaits you. Because He knows what’s best! He has your very best interests in mind, at all times. So take up your cross, and take it daily — even though it might at times seem more than you can bear.
Remember: One’s already gone before you to carry your cross. Because He overcame, You can too. You can, and you will.
Father, forgive me for whining about the cross you’ve given me to bear. You bore all my suffering at the cross, which made a way for my simple load. I lay down my selfishness so You may live in me and I may be obedient. Amen.