Take up your cross

Jesus said, ‘if anyone wants to follow me, let him deny himself and take up his cross’. In our consumer age I feel like we don’t apprciate the impact of such a statement. The cross was a horrific death, but more on that as we approach Easter. It would have brought pictures to their minds of the crucifixions on display outside of Jerusalem, little did they know that their Lord would be himself hung on one in the not to distant future. There are many things that could be said about the cross, but needless to say it was one of, if not the worst way to die.

Why would Jesus be talking about denying yourself and going to the cross? He was talking about the life of a Christian, self denial and dieing to self so that we can be true followers of God. The spirit of the age however says, what about you? How do you feel? Does this make your life better? We have a self centred existence, looking to satisfy our own desires and wants, maybe in a slightly sanctified manner, but still we have our own interests at heart.

The cross in Latin is crux, the crux of history is the cross. We cannot escape the death that following Jesus will bring. It is inevitable. But from the ashes of dieing to self will rise a joy and a love and a freedom beyond which the pleasures of this world will never quench.

Lord let me drink from heavens springs, give me grace to deny myself and find true joy in walking in your light, taking up my cross today. I choose to lay aside my agenda and plans to serve those you bring across my path today. In Jesus name Amen.