Matthew 16:24 (New Living Translation)
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.
With the problems of today I keep hearing from people that are discouraged and depressed. People have relationship problems, employment problems, problems with their children, problems with being single and wanting to be married, being married and wanting to be single, you name it and people are dealing with it.
I think of my nephews who lost their mom (my Sister) when they were only 4 and 7 years old. I think of our son Michael who lost his dad when he was only 3 years old. I think of our son Kyle who had a horrendous childhood and now he has no birth family at all. I think of my wife who was adopted and brought to America when she was only 2 years old and she knows none of her birth family.
These are all heavy crosses that we must bear and everyone has their own. I told my nephew last night that we have to bear these crosses and learn to be beter and not bitter. We live in a fallen world and bad things happen to good people.
But the best news you will ever hear is that God Created you to live forever in fellowship with Him. When God created Adam and Eve He intended for them to live forever and be close to him and Adam and Eve chose to try and become like God and know what He knew, they took from what God told them to stay clear of. When they decided to take it anyway it caused God’s created order to compensate for their disobedience. From that time things started to die. The first death was that of an animal that Adam and Eve no doubt loved very much and I believe it was likely a Lamb because through the scripture Jesus is referred to as The Lamb of God and He was His Father’s Son and He was loved very much but had to die for the World. Jesus had a cross to bear and it was a heavy one but it is the method and the way that God chose to bring you and I back to Him. Now, in this lifetime you and I have our own crosses to bear. They may be physical, emotional, financial, the list goes on and on. It is the way we respond to the crosses that we are called to bear that will determine who we are.
Jesus said, don’t focus on the cross so much (turn form your selfish ways) rather, just pick it up and keep following and one day it will be finished and there will be no more crosses and we will see that it was all worth it. Don’t get so focused on your crosses that you lose sight of all the others in the world who have even heavier crosses to bear. We were created to live forever and that we will do.
What is your Cross?